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Anne Frank 

Edited by Otto H. Frank and Mirjam Pressler 
Translated by Susan Massotty 


Anne Frank's The Diary of a Young Girl is among the most enduring documents of the 
twentieth century. Since its publication in 1947, it has been read by tens of millions 
of people all over the world. It remains a beloved and deeply admired testament to the 
indestructable nature of the human spirit. 

Restore in this Definitive Edition are diary entries that had been omitted from the 
original edition. These passages, which constitute 30 percent more material, reinforce 
the fact that Anne was first and foremost a teenage girl, not a remote and flawless 
symbol. She fretted about, and tried to copie with, her own emerging sexuality. Like 
many young girls, she often found herself in disagreement with her mother. And like 
any teenager, she veered between the carefree nature of a child and the full-fledged 
sorrow of an adult. Anne emerges more human, more vulnerable, and more vital than 

Anne Frank and her family, fleeing the horrors of Nazi occupation, hid in the back of 
an Amsterdam warehouse for two years. She was thirteen when the family went into 
the Secret Annex, and in these pages she grows to be a young woman and a wise 
observer of human nature as well. With unusual insight, she reveals the relations 
between eight people living under extraordinary conditions, facing hunger, the 
ever-present threat of discovery and death, complete estrangement from the outside 
world, and above all, the boredom, the petty misunderstandings, and the frustrations of 
living under such unbearable strain, in such confined quarters. 

A timely story rediscovered by each new generation, The Diary of a Young Girl stands 
without peer. For both young readers and adults it continues to bring to life this 
young woman, who for a time survived the worst horror of the modern world had seen 
— and who remained triumphantly and heartbreakingly human throughout her ordeal. 
For those who know and love Anne Frank, The Definitive Edition is a chance to 
discover her anew. For readers who have not yet encountered her, this is the edition 
to cherish. 

ANNE FRANK was born on June 12, 1929. She died while imprisoned at 
Bergen— Belsen, three months short of her sixteenth birthday. OTTO H. FRANK was 
the only member of his immediate framily to survive the Holocaust. He died in 1980. 
MIRJAM PRESSFER is a popular writer of books for young adults. She lives in 

Translated by Susan Massotty. 


Anne Frank kept a diary from June 12, 1942, to August 1, 1944. Initially, she wrote 
it strictly for herself. Then, one day in 1944, Gerrit Bolkestein, a member of the 
Dutch government in exile, announced in a radio broadcast from Fondon that after the 
war he hoped to collect eyewitness accounts of the suffering of the Dutch people 
under the German occupation, which could be made available to the public. As an 
example, he specifically mentioned letters and diaries. 

Impressed by this speech, Anne Frank decided that when the war was over she would 
publish a book based on her diary. She began rewriting and editing her diary, 
improving on the text, omitting passages she didn't think were interesting enough and 
adding others from memory. At the same time, she kept up her original diary. In the 
scholarly work The Diary of Anne Frank: The Critical Edition (1989), Anne's first, 
unedited diary is referred to as version a, to distinguish it from her second, edited 
diary, which is known as version b. 

The last entry in Anne's diary is dated August 1, 1944. On August 4, 1944, the eight 
people hiding in the Secret Annex were arrested. Miep Gies and Bep Voskuijl, the two 
secretaries working in the building, found Anne's diaries strewn allover the floor. ,Miep 
Gies tucked them away in a desk drawer for safekeeping. After the war, when it 
became clear that Anne was dead, she gave the diaries, unread, to Anne's father, Otto 

After long deliberation, Otto Frank decided to fulfill his daughter's wish and publish 
her diary. He selected material from versions a and b, editing them into a shorter 
version later referred to as version c. Readers all over the world know this as The 
Diary of a fauna Girl. 

In making his choice, Otto Frank had to bear several points in mind. To begin with, 

the book had to be kept short so that it would fit in with a series put out by the 
Dutch publisher. In addition, several passages dealing with Anne's sexuality were 
omitted; at the time of the diary's initial publication, in 1947, it was not customary to 
write openly about sex, and certainly not in books for young adults. Out of respect for 
the dead, Otto Frank also omitted a number of unflattering passages about his wife and 
the other residents of the Secret Annex. Anne Frank, who was thirteen when she 
began her diary and fifteen when she was forced to stop, wrote without reserve about 
her likes and dislikes. 

When Otto Frank died in 1980, he willed his daughter's manuscripts to the Netherlands 
State Institute for War Documentation in Amsterdam. Because the authenticity of the 
diary had been challenged ever since its publication, the Institute for War 
Documentation ordered a thorough investigation. Once the diary was proved, beyond a 
shadow of a doubt, to be genuine, it was published in its entirety, along with the 
results of an exhaustive study. The Critical Edition contains not only versions a, band 
c, but also articles on the background of the Frank family, the circumstances 
surrounding their arrest and deportation, and the examination into Anne's handwriting, 
the document and the materials used. 

The Anne Frank— Fonds (Anne Frank Foundation) in Basel (Switzerland),, which as 
Otto Frank's sole heir had also inherited his daughter's copyrights, then decided to 
have anew, expanded edition of the diary published for general readers. This new 
edition in no way affects the integrity of the old one originally edited by Otto Frank, 
which brought the diary and its message to millions of people. The task of compthng 
the expanded edition was given to the writer and translator Mirjam Pressler. Otto 
Frank's original selection has now been supplemented with passages from Anne's a and 
b versions. Mirjam Pressler's definitive edition, approved by the Anne Frank— Fonds, 
contains approximately 30 percent more material and is intended to give the reader 
more insight into the world of Anne Frank. 

In writing her second version (b), Anne invented pseudonyms for the people who 
would appear in her book. She initially wanted to call herself Anne Aulis, and later 
Anne Robin. Otto Frank opted to call his family by their own names and to follow 
Anne's wishes with regard to the others. Over the years, the identity of the people 
who helped the family in the Secret Annex has become common knowledge. In this 
edition, the helpers are now referred to by their real names, as they so justly deserve 
to be. All other persons are named in accordance with the pseudonyms in The Critical 
Edition. The Institute for War Documentation has arbitrarily assigned initials to those 
persons wishing to remain anonymous. 

The real names of the other people hiding in the Secret Annex are: 

(from Osnabriick, Germany): 

Auguste van Pels (born September 9, 1890) 

Hermann van Pels (born March 31, 1889) 

Peter van Pels (born November 8, 1926) 

Called by Anne, in her manuscript: Petronella, Hans and Alfred van Daan; and in the 
book: Petronella, Hermann and Peter van Daan. 


(born April 30, 1889, in Giessen, Germany): 

Called by Anne, in her manuscript and in the book: Alfred Dussel. 

The reader may wish to bear in mind that much of this edition is based on the b 
version of Anne's diary, which she wrote when she was around fifteen years old. 
Occasionally, Anne went back and commented on a passage she had written earlier. 
These comments are clearly marked in this edition. Naturally, Anne's spelling and 
linguistic errors have been corrected. Otherwise, the text has basically been left as 
she wrote it, since any attempts at editing and clarification would be inappropriate in a 
historical document. 

I hope I will be able to confide everything to you, as I have never been able to 
confide in anyone, and I hope you will be a great source of comfort and support. 

June 12, 1942 

I hope I will be able to confide everything to you, as I have never been able to 
confide in anyone, and I hope you will be a great source of comfort and support. 

COMMENT ADDED BY ANNE ON SEPTEMBER 28, 1942: So far you truly have been 
a areat source of comfort to me, and so has Kitty, whom I now write to regularly. 
This way of keeping a diary is much nicer, and now I can hardly wait for those 
moments when I'm able to write in you. Oh, I'm so alad I brought you along! 

SUNDAY, JUNE 14, 1942 

I'll begin from the moment I got you, the moment I saw you lying on the table among 

my other birthday presents. (I went along when you were bought, but that doesn't 


On Friday, June 12, I was awake at six o'clock, which isn't surprising, since it was 
my birthday. But I'm not allowed to get up at that hour, so I had to control my 
curiosity until quarter to seven. When I couldn't wait any longer, I went to the dining 
room, where Moortje (the cat) welcomed me by rubbing against my legs. 

A little after seven I went to Daddy and Mama and then to the living room to open 

my presents, and you were the first thing I saw, maybe one of my nicest presents. 

Then a bouquet of roses, some peonies and a potted plant. From Daddy and Mama I 
got a blue blouse, a game, a bottle of grape juice, which to my mind tastes a bit like 
wine (after all, wine is made from grapes), a puzzle, a jar of cold cream, 2.50 guilders 
and a gift certificate for two books. I got another book as well, Camera Obscura (but 
Margot already has it, so I exchanged mine for something else), a platter of 
homemade cookies (which I made myself, of course, since I've become quite an expert 
at baking cookies), lots of candy and a strawberry tart from Mother. And a letter from 
Grammy, right on time, but of course that was just a coincidence. 

Then Hanneli came to pick me up, and we went to school. During recess I passed out 
cookies to my teachers and my class, and then it was time to get back to work. I 
didn't arrive home until five, since I went to gym with the rest of the class. (I'm not 
allowed to take part because my shoulders and hips tend to get dislocated.) As it was 
my birthday, I got to decide which game my classmates would play, and I chose 
volleyball. Afterward they all danced around me in a circle and sang "Happy Birthday." 
When I got home, Sanne Federmann was already there. Ilse Wagner, Hanneli Goslar 
and Jacqueline van Maarsen came home with me after gym, since we're in the same 
class. Hanneli and Sanne used to be my two best friends. People who saw us together 
used to say, "There goes Anne, Hanne and Sanne." I only met Jacqueline van Maarsen 
when I started at the Jewish Fyceum, and now she's my best friend. Ilse is Hanneli's 
best friend, and Sanne goes to another school and has friends there. 

They gave me a beautiful book, Dutch Sasas and Lesends, but they gave me Volume II 
by mistake, so I exchanged two other books for Volume I. Aunt Helene brought me a 
puzzle, Aunt Stephanie a darling brooch and Aunt Deny a terrific book: Daisy Goes to 
the Mountains. 

This morning I lay in the bathtub thinking how wonderful it would be if I had a dog 

like Rin Tin Tin. I'd call him Rin Tin Tin too, and I'd take him to school with me, 
where he could stay in the janitor's room or by the bicycle racks when the weather 
was good. 

MONDAY, JUNE 15, 1942 

I had my birthday party on Sunday afternoon. The Rin Tin Tin movie was a big hit 
with my classmates. I got two brooches, a bookmark and two books. I'll start by 
saying a few things about my school and my class, beginning with the students. 

Betty Bloemendaal looks kind of poor, and I think she probably is. She lives on some 
obscure street in West Amsterdam, and none of us know where it is. She does very 
well at school, but that's because she works so hard, not because she's so smart. 
She's pretty quiet. 

Jacqueline van Maarsen is supposedly my best friend, but I've never had a real friend. 
At first I thought Jacque would be one, but I was badly mistaken. 

D. Q.* [* Initials have been assigned at random to those persons who prefer to remain 
anonymous.] is a very nervous girl who's always forgetting things, so the teachers 
keep assigning her extra homework as punishment. She's very kind, especially to G.Z. 

E. S. talks so much it isn't funny. She's always touching your hair or fiddling with your 
buttons when she asks you something. They say she can't stand me, but I don't care, 
since I don't like her much either. 

Henny Mets is a nice girl with a cheerful disposition, except that she talks in a loud 
voice and is really childish when we're playing outdoors. Unfortunately, Henny has a 
girlfriend named Beppy who's a bad influence on her because she's dirty and vulgar. 

J.R. - I could write a whole book about her. J. is a detestable, sneaky, stuck-up, 
two-faced gossip who thinks she's so grown-up. She's really got Jacque under her 
spell, and that's a shame. J. is easily offended, bursts into tears at the slightest thing 
and, to top it all off, is a terrible show-off. Miss J. always has to be right. She's 
very rich, and has a closet full of the most adorable dresses that are way too old for 
her. She thinks she's gorgeous, but she's not. J. and I can't stand each other. 

Use Wagner is a nice girl with a cheerful disposition, but she's extremely finicky and 
can spend hours moaning and groaning about something. Ilse likes me a lot. She's very 
smart, but lazy. 

Hanneli Goslar, or Lies as she's called at school, is a bit on the strange side. She's 
usually shy — outspoken at home, but reserved around other people. She blabs 
whatever you tell her to her mother. But she says what she thinks, and lately I've 
corne to appreciate her a great deal. 

Nannie van Praag-Sigaar is small, funny and sensible. I think she's nice. She's pretty 
smart. There isn't much else you can say about Nannie. Eefje de Jong is, in my 
opinion, terrific. Though she's only twelve, she's quite the lady. She acts as if I were 
a baby. She's also very helpful, and I like her. 

G.Z. is the prettiest girl in our class. She has a nice face, but is kind of dumb. I think 

they're going to hold her back a year, but of course I haven't told her that. 

COMMENT ADDED BY ANNE AT A LATER DATE: To my areat surprise, G.Z. 
wasn't held back a year after all. 

And sitting next to G.Z. is the last of us twelve girls, me. 

There's a lot to be said about the boys, or maybe not so much after all. 

Maurice Coster is one of my many admirers, but pretty much of a pest. Sallie 
Springer has a filthy mind, and rumor has it that he's gone all the way. Still, I think 
he's terrific, because he's very funny. 

Emiel Bonewit is G.Z.'s admirer, but she doesn't care. He's pretty boring. Rob Cohen 
used to be in love with me too, but I can't stand him anymore. He's an obnoxious, 

two-faced, lying, sniveling little goof who has an awfully high opinion of himself. 

Max van de Velde is a farm boy from Medemblik, but eminently suitable, as Margot 
would say. 

Herman Koopman also has a filthy mind, just like Jopie de Beer, who's a terrible flirt 
and absolutely girl-crazy. 

Leo Blom is Jopie de Beer's best friend, but has been ruined by his dirty mind. 

Albert de Mesquita came from the Montessori School and skipped a grade. He's really 

Leo Slager came from the same school, but isn't as smart. 

Ru Stoppelmon is a short, goofy boy from Almelo who transferred to this school in 
the middle of the year. 

C.N. does whatever he's not supposed to. 

Jacques Kocernoot sits behind us, next to C., and we (G. and I) laugh ourselves silly. 
Harry Schaap is the most decent boy in our class. He's nice. 

Werner Joseph is nice too, but all the changes taking place lately have made him too 
quiet, so he seems boring. Sam Salomon is one of those tough guys from across the 
tracks. A real brat. (Admirer!) 

Appie Riem is pretty Orthodox, but a brat too. 


Writing in a diary is a really strange experience for someone like me. Not only 
because I've never written anything before, but also because it seems to me that later 
on neither I nor anyone else will be interested in the musings of a thirteen- year- old 
schoolgirl. Oh well, it doesn't matter. I feel like writing, and I have an even greater 
need to get all kinds of things off my chest. 

"Paper has more patience than people." I thought of this saying on one of those days 
when I was feeling a little depressed and was sitting at home with my chin in my 
hands, bored and listless, wondering whether to stay in or go out. I finally stayed 
where I was, brooding. Yes, paper does have more patience, and since I'm not planning 
to let anyone else read this stiff-backed notebook grandly referred to as a "diary," 
unless I should ever find a real friend, it probably won't make a bit of difference. 

Now I'm back to the point that prompted me to keep a diary in the first place: I don't 
have a friend. 

Let me put it more clearly, since no one will believe that a thirteen year-old girl is 
completely alone in the world. And I'm not. I have loving parents and a 
sixteen-year-old sister, and there are about thirty people I can call friends. I have a 
throng of admirers who can't keep their adoring eyes off me and who sometimes have 
to resort to using a broken pocket mirror to try and catch a glimpse of me in the 
classroom. I have a family, loving aunts and a good home. No, on the surface I seem 
to have everything, except my one true friend. All I think about when I'm with friends 
is having a good time. I can't bring myself to talk about anything but ordinary 

everyday things. We don't seem to be able to get any closer, and that's the problem. 
Maybe it's my fault that we don't confide in each other. In any case, that's just how 

things are, and unfortunately they're not liable to change. This is why I've started the 


To enhance the image of this long-awaited friend in my imagination, I don't want to 
jot down the facts in this diary the way most people would do, but I want the diary 
to be my friend, and I'm going to call this friend Kitty. 

Since no one would understand a word of my stories to Kitty if I were to plunge right 

in, I'd better provide a brief sketch of my life, much as I dislike doing so. 

My father, the most adorable father I've ever seen, didn't marry my mother until he 

was thirty-six and she was twenty-five. My sister Margot was born in Frankfurt am 

Main in Germany in 1926. I was born on June 12, 1929. I lived in Frankfurt until I 
was four. Because we're Jewish, my father immigrated to Holland in 1933, when he 
became the Managing Director of the Dutch Opekta Company, which manufactures 
products used in making jam. My mother, Edith Hollander Frank, went with him to 
Holland in September, while Margot and I were sent to Aachen to stay with our 
grandmother. Margot went to Holland in December, and I followed in February, when I 
was plunked down on the table as a birthday present for Margot. 

I started right away at the Montessori nursery school. I stayed there until I was six, 
at which time I started first grade. In sixth grade my teacher was Mrs. Kuperus, the 
principal. At the end of the year we were both in tears as we said a heartbreaking 

farewell, because I'd been accepted at the Jewish Lyceum, where Margot also went to 


Our lives were not without anxiety, since our relatives in Germany were suffering 
under Hitler's anti-Jewish laws. After the pogroms in 1938 my two uncles (my 
mother's brothers) fled Germany, finding safe refuge in North America. My elderly 
grandmother came to live with us. She was seventy-three years old at the time. 

After May 1940 the good times were few and far between: first there was the war, 
then the capitulation and then the arrival of the Germans, which is when the trouble 
started for the Jews. Our freedom was severely restricted by a series of anti-Jewish 
decrees: Jews were required to wear a yellow star: Jews were required to turn in 
their bicycles! Jews were forbidden to use street-cars! Jews were forbidden to ride in 
cars, even their own! Jews were required to do their shopping between 3 and 5 P.M.! 
Jews were required to frequent only Jewish-owned barbershops and beauty parlors! 
Jews were forbidden to be out on the streets between 8 P.M. and 6 A.M.! Jews were 

forbidden to attend theaters, movies or any other forms of entertainment; Jews were 
forbidden to use swimming pools, tennis courts, hockey fields or any other athletic 
fields; Jews were forbidden to go rowing; Jews were forbidden to take part in any 
athletic activity in public; Jews were forbidden to sit in their gardens or those of their 
friends after 8 P.M.; Jews were forbidden to visit Christians in their homes; Jews 
were required to attend Jewish schools, etc. You couldn't do this and you couldn't do 
that, but life went on. Jacque always said to me, "I don't dare do anything anymore, 
'cause I'm afraid it's not allowed." 

In the summer of 1941 Grandma got sick and had to have an operation, so my 
birthday passed with little celebration. In the summer of 1940 we didn't do much for 
my birthday either, since the fighting had just ended in Holland. Grandma died in 
January 1942. No one knows how often I think of her and still love her. This birthday 
celebration in 1942 was intended to make up for the others, and Grandma's candle was 
lit along with the rest. 

The four of us are still doing well, and that brings me to the present date of June 20, 
1942, and the solemn dedication of my diary. 

SATURDAY, JUNE 20, 1942 

Dearest Kitty! Let me get started right away; it's nice and quiet now. Father and 
Mother are out and Margot has gone to play Ping-Pong with some other young people 
at her friend Trees's. I've been playing a lot of Ping-Pong myself lately. So much 
that five of us girls have formed a club. It's called "The Little Dipper Minus Two." A 
really silly name, but it's based on a mistake. We wanted to give our club a special 

name; and because there were five of us, we came up with the idea of the Little 

Dipper. We thought it consisted of five stars, but we turned out to be wrong. It has 
seven, like the Big Dipper, which explains the "Minus Two." Ilse Wagner has a 
Ping-Pong set, and the Wagners let us play in their big dining room whenever we 
want. Since we five Ping-Pong players like ice cream, especially in the summer, and 
since you get hot playing Ping-Pong, our games usually end with a visit to the 
nearest ice-cream parlor that allows Jews: either Oasis or Delphi. We've long since 
stopped hunting around for our purses or money — most of the time it's so busy in 
Oasis that we manage to find a few generous young men of our acquaintance or an 
admirer to offer us more ice cream than we could eat in a week. 

You're probably a little surprised to hear me talking about admirers at such a tender 
age. Unfortunately, or not, as the case may be, this vice seems to be rampant at our 
school. As soon as a boy asks if he can bicycle home with me and we get to talking, 

nine times out of ten I can be sure he'll become enamored on the spot and won't let 

me out of his sight for a second. His ardor eventually cools, especially since I ignore 
his passionate glances and pedal blithely on my way. If it gets so bad that they start 
rambling on about "asking Father's permission," I swerve slightly on my bike, my 
schoolbag falls, and the young man feels obliged to get off his bike and hand me the 
bag, by which time I've switched the conversation to another topic. These are the 
most innocent types. Of course, there are those who blow you kisses or try to take 
hold of your arm, but they're definitely knocking on the wrong door. I get off my bike 
and either refuse to make further use of their company or act as if I'm insulted and 
tell them in no uncertain terms to go on home without me. There you are. We've now 
laid the basis for our friendship. Until tomorrow. 

Yours, Anne 

SUNDAY, JUNE 21, 1942 
Dearest Kitty, 

Our entire class is quaking in its boots. The reason, of course, is the upcoming 
meeting in which the teachers decide who'll be promoted to the next grade and who'll 
be kept back. Half the class is making bets. G.Z. and I laugh ourselves sick at the two 
boys behind us, C.N. and Jacques Kocernoot, who have staked their entire vacation 
savings on their bet. From morning to night, it's "You're going to pass, No, I'm not," 
"Yes, you are," "No, I'm not." Even G.'s pleading glances and my angry outbursts can't 
calm them down. If you ask me, there are so many dummies that about a quarter of 
the class should be kept back, but teachers are the most unpredictable creatures on 
earth. Maybe this time they'll be unpredictable in the right direction for a change. I'm 
not so worried about my girlfriends and myself. 

We'll make it. The only subject I'm not sure about is math. Anyway, all we can do is 
wait. Until then, we keep telling each other not to lose heart. 

I get along pretty well with all my teachers. There are nine of them, seven men and 
two women. Mr. Keesing, the old fogey who teaches math, was mad at me for the 
longest time because I talked so much. After several warnings, he assigned me extra 
homework. An essay on the subject "A Chatterbox." A chatterbox, what can you write 
about that? I'd wbrry about that later, I decided. I jotted down the assignment in my 
notebook, tucked it in my bag and tried to keep quiet. 

That evening, after I'd finished the rest of my homework, the note about the essay 
caught my eye. I began thinking about the subject while chewing the tip of my 
fountain pen. Anyone could ramble on and leave big spaces between the words, but the 

trick was to come up with convincing arguments to prove the necessity of talking. I 
thought and thought, and suddenly I had an idea. I wrote the three pages Mr. Keesing 
had assigned me and was satisfied. I argued that talking is a female trait and that I 
would do my best to keep it under control, but that I would never be able to break 
myself of the habit, since my mother talked as much as I did, if not more, and that 
there's not much you can do about inherited traits. 

Mr. Keesing had a good laugh at my arguments, but when I proceeded to talk my way 
through the next class, he assigned me a second essay. This time it was supposed to 
be on "An Incorrigible Chatterbox." I handed it in, and Mr. Keesing had nothing to 
complain about for two whole classes. However, during the third class he'd finally had 
enough. "Anne Frank, as punishment for talking in class, write an essay entitled 
'Quack, Quack, Quack,' said Mistress Chatterback.'" 

The class roared. I had to laugh too, though I'd ) nearly exhausted my ingenuity on 
the topic of chatterboxes. It was time to come up with something else, j something 
original. My friend Sanne, who's good at poetry, offered to help me write the essay 
from beginning to end in verse. I jumped for joy. Keesing was trying to play a joke on 
me with this ridiculous subject, but I'd make sure the joke was on him. I finished my 

poem, and it was beautiful! It was about a mother duck and a father swan with three 

baby ducklings who were bitten to death by the father because they quacked too 
much. Luckily, Keesing took the joke the right way. He read the poem to the class, 
adding his own comments, and to several other classes as well. Since then I've been 
allowed to talk and haven't been assigned any extra homework. On the contrary, 
Keesing's always i making jokes these days. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

It's sweltering. Everyone is huffing and puffing, and in this heat I have to walk 
everywhere. Only now do I realize how pleasant a streetcar is, but we Jews are no 

longer allowed to make use of this luxury; our own two feet are good enough for us. 

Yesterday at lunchtime I had an appointment with the dentist on Jan Luykenstraat. It's 
a long way from our school on Stadstimmertuinen. That afternoon I nearly fell asleep 
at my desk. Fortunately, people automatically offer you something to drink. The dental 
assistant is really kind. 

The only mode of transportation left to us is the ferry. The ferryman at Josef 

Israelkade took us across when we asked him to. It's not the fault of the Dutch that 
we Jews are having such a bad time. 

I wish I didn't have to go to school. My bike was stolen during Easter vacation, and 
Father gave Mother's bike to some Christian friends for safekeeping. Thank goodness 
summer vacation is almost here; one more week and our torment will be over. 

Something unexpected happened yesterday morning. As I was passing the bicycle 
racks, I heard my name being called. I turned around and there was the nice boy I'd 
met the evening before at my friend Wilma's. He's Wilma's second cousin. I used to 
think Wilma was nice, which she is, but all she ever talks about is boys, and that gets 
to be a bore. He came toward me, somewhat shyly, and introduced himself as Hello 
Silberberg. I was a little surprised and wasn't sure what he wanted, but it didn't take 
me long to find out. He asked if I would allow him to accompany me to school. "As 
long as you're headed that way, I'll go with you," I said. And so we walked together. 
Hello is sixteen and good at telling all kinds of funny stories. 

He was waiting for me again this morning, and I expect he will be from now on. 


Dearest Kitty, 

Until today I honestly couldn't find the time to write you. I was with friends all day 
Thursday, we had company on Friday, and that's how it went until today. 

Hello and I have gotten to know each other very well this past week, and he's told 
me a lot about his life. He comes from Gelsenkirchen and is living with his 
grandparents. His parents are in Belgium, but there's no way he can get there. Hello 
used to have a girlfriend named Ursula. I know her too. She's perfectly sweet and 
perfectly boring. Ever since he met me, Hello has realized that he's been falling asleep 
at Ursul's side. So I'm kind of a pep tonic. You never know what you're good for! 

Jacque spent Saturday night here. Sunday afternoon she was at Hanneli's, and I was 
bored stiff. 

Hello was supposed to come over that evening, but he called around six. I answered 
the phone, and he said, "This is Helmuth Silberberg. May I please speak to Anne?" 

Oh, Hello. This is Anne. 

"Oh, hi, Anne. How are you?" " 

"Fine, thanks." 

"I just wanted to say I'm sorry but I can't come tonight, though I would like to have a 

word with you. Is it all right if I come by and pick you up in about ten minutes 

"Yes, that's fine. Bye-bye!" 

"Okay, I'll be right over. Bye-bye!" 

I hung up, quickly changed my clothes and fixed my hair. I was so nervous I leaned 
out the window to watch for him. He finally showed up. Miracle of miracles, I didn't 
rush down the stairs, but waited quietly until he rang the bell. I went down to open 
the door, and he got right to the point. 

"Anne, my grandmother thinks you're too young for me to be seeing you on a regular 
basis. She says I should be going to the Lowenbachs', but you probably know that I'm 
not going out with Ursul anymore." 

"No, I didn't know. What happened? Did you two have a fight?" 

"No, nothing like that. I told Ursul that we weren't suited to each other and so it was 

better for us not to go together anymore, but that she was welcome at my house and 

I hoped I would be welcome at hers. Actually, I thought Ursul was hanging around 
with another boy, and I treated her as if she were. But that wasn't true. And then my 
uncle said I should apologize to her, but of course I didn't feel like it, and that's why 
I broke up with her. But that was just one of the reasons. 

"Now my grandmother wants me to see Ursul and not you, but I don't agree and I'm 
not going to. Sometimes old people have really old-fashioned ideas, but that doesn't 
mean I have to go along with them. I need my grandparents, but in a certain sense 
they need me too. From now on I'll be free on Wednesday evenings. You see, my 
grandparents made me sign up for a wood-carving class, but actually I go to a club 
organized by the Zionists. My grandparents don't want me to go, because they're 
anti-Zionists. I'm not a fanatic Zionist, but it interests me. Anyway, it's been such a 
mess lately that I'm planning to quit. So next Wednesday will be my last meeting. 
That means I can see you Wednesday evening, Saturday afternoon, Saturday evening, 
Sunday afternoon and maybe even more." 

"But if your grandparents don't want you to, you? shouldn't go behind their backs." 
"All's fair in love and war." 

Just then we passed Blankevoort's Bookstore and there was Peter Schiff with two 
other boys! it was the first time he'd said hello to me in ages, and it really made me 
feel good. 

Monday evening Hello came over to meet Father and Mother. I had bought a cake and 
some candy, and we had tea and cookies, the works, but neither Hello nor I felt like 
sitting stiffly on our chairs. So we went out for a walk, and he didn't deliver me to 
my door until ten past eight. Father was furious. He said it was very wrong of me not 
to get home on time. I had to promise to be home by ten to eight in the future. I've 
been asked to Hello's on Saturday. 

Wilma told me that one night when Hello was at her house, she asked him, "Who do 
you like best, Ursul or Anne?" 

He said, "It's none of your business." 

But as he was leaving (they hadn't talked to each other the rest of the evening), he 
said, "Well, I like Anne better, but don't tell anyone. Bye!" And whoosh. . . he was 
out the door. 

In everything he says or does, I can see that Hello is in love with me, and it's kind 
of nice for a change. Margot would say that Hello is eminently suitable. I think so too, 
but he's more than that. Mother is also full of praise: "A good-looking boy. Nice and 
polite." I'm glad he's so popular with everyone. Except with my girlfriends. He thinks 
they're very childish, and he's right about that. Jacque still teases me about him, but 
I'm not in love with him. Not really. It's all right for me to have boys as friends. 
Nobody minds. 

Mother is always asking me who I'm going to marry when I grow up, but I bet she'll 
never guess it's Peter, because I talked her out of that idea myself, without batting an 
eyelash. I love Peter as I've never loved anyone, and I tell myself he's only going 
around with all those other girls to hide his feelings for me. Maybe he thinks Hello 
and I are in love with each other, which we're not. He's just a friend, or as Mother 
puts it, a beau. 

Yours, Anne 

SUNDAY, JULY 5, 1942 

Dear Kitty, 

The graduation ceremony in the Jewish Theater on Friday went as expected. My 
report card wasn't too bad. I got one D, a C— in algebra and all the rest B's, except 
for two B + 's and two B-'s. My parents are pleased, but they're not like other parents 
when it comes to grades. They never worry about report cards, good or bad. As long 
as I'm healthy and happy and don't talk back too much, they're satisfied. If these three 
things are all right, everything else will take care of itself. 

I'm just the opposite. I don't want to be a poor student. I was accepted to the Jewish 
Lyceum on a conditional basis. I was supposed to stay in the seventh grade at the 
Montessori School, but when Jewish children were required to go to Jewish schools, 
Mr. Elte finally agreed, after a great deal of persuasion, to accept Lies Goslar and me. 
Lies also passed this year, though she has to repeat her geometry exam. 

Poor Lies. It isn't easy for her to study at home; her baby sister, a spoiled little 
two-year-old, plays in her room all day. If Gabi doesn't get her way, she starts 
screaming, and if Lies doesn't look after her, Mrs. Goslar starts screaming. So Lies 
has a hard time doing her homework, and as long as that's the case, the tutoring she's 
been getting won't help much. The Goslar household is really a sight. Mrs. Goslar's 
parents live next door, but eat with the family. The there's a hired girl, the baby, the 
always absentminded and absent Mr. Goslar and the always nervous and irrita Ie Mrs. 
Goslar, who's expecting another baby. Lies, who's all thumbs, gets lost in the mayhem. 

My sister Margot has also gotten her report card. 

Brilliant, as usual. If we had such a thing as "cum laude," she would have passed with 
honors, she's so smart. 

Father has been home a lot lately. There's nothing for him to do at the office; it must 
be awful to feel you're not needed. Mr. Kleiman has taken over Opekta, and Mr. 
Kugler, Gies & Co., the company dealing in spices and spice substitutes that was set 
up in 1941. 

A few days ago, as we were taking a stroll around our neighborhood square, Father 
began to talk about going into hiding. He said it would be very hard for us to live cut 
off from the rest of the world. I asked him why he was bringing this up now. 

"Well, Anne," he replied, "you know that for more than a year we've been bringing 
clothes, food and furniture to other people. We don't want our belongings to be seized 
by the Germans. Nor do we want to fall into their clutches ourselves. So we'll leave 
of our own accord and not wait to be hauled away." 

"But when, Father?" He sounded so serious that I felt scared. 

"Don't you worry. We'll take care of everything, just enjoy your carefree life while 
you can." 

That was it. Oh, may these somber words not come true for as long as possible. 

The doorbell's ringing, Hello's here, time to stop. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

It seems like years since Sunday morning. So much has happened it's as if the whole 
world had suddenly turned upside down. But as you can see, Kitty, I'm still alive, and 
that's the main thing, Father says. I'm alive all right, but don't ask where or how. You 
probably don't understand a word I'm saying today, so I'll begin by telling you what 
happened Sunday afternoon. 

At three o'clock (Hello had left but was supposed to come back later), the doorbell 
rang. I didn't hear it, since I was out on the balcony, lazily reading in the sun. A little 
while later Margot appeared in the kitchen doorway looking very agitated. "Father has 
received a call-up notice from the SS," she whispered. "Mother has gone to see Mr. 
van Daan" (Mr. van Daan is Father's business partner and a good friend.) 

I was stunned. A call-up: everyone knows what that means. Visions of concentration 
camps and lonely cells raced through my head. How could we let Father go to such a 
fate? "Of course he's not going," declared Margot as we waited for Mother in the 
living room. "Mother's gone to Mr. van Daan to ask whether we can move to our 
hiding place tomorrow. The van Daans are going with us. There will be seven of us 
altogether." Silence. We couldn't speak. The thought of Father off visiting someone in 
the Jewish Hospital and completely unaware of what was happening, the long wait for 
Mother, the heat, the suspense — all this reduced us to silence. 

Suddenly the doorbell rang again. "That's Hello," I said. 

"Don't open the door!" exclaimed Margot to stop me. But it wasn't necessary, since 
we heard Mother and Mr. van Daan downstairs talking to Hello, and then the two of 
them came inside and shut the door behind them. Every time the bell rang, either 
Margot or I had to tiptoe downstairs to see if it was Father, and we didn't let anyone 
else in. Margot and I were sent from the room, as Mr. van Daan wanted to talk to 
Mother alone. 

When she and I were sitting in our bedroom, Margot told me that the call-up was not 
for Father, but for her. At this second shock, I began to cry. Margot is sixteen — 
apparently they want to send girls her age away on their own. But thank goodness she 
won't be going; Mother had said so herself, which must be what Father had meant 
when he talked to me about our going into hiding. Hiding. . . where would we hide? In 
the city? In the country? In a house? In a shack? When, where, how. . . ? These 
were questions I wasn't allowed to ask, but they still kept running through my mind. 

Margot and I started packing our most important belongings into a schoolbag. The first 
thing I stuck in was this diary, and then curlers, handkerchiefs, schoolbooks, a comb 
and some old letters. Preoccupied by the thought of going into hiding, I stuck the 
craziest things in the bag, but I'm not sorry. Memories mean more to me than 

Father finally came hQme around five o'clock, and we called Mr. Kleiman to ask if he 
could come by that evening. Mr. van Daan left and went to get Miep. Miep arrived and 
promised to return later that night, taking with her a bag full of shoes, dresses, 
jackets, underwear and stockings. After that it was quiet in our apartment; none of us 
felt like eating. It was still hot, and everything was very strange. 

We had rented our big upstairs room to a Mr. Goldschmidt, a divorced man in his 
thirties, who apparently had nothing to do that evening, since despite all our polite 
hints he hung around until ten o'clock. 

Miep and Jan Gies came at eleven. Miep, who's worked for Father's company since 
1933, has become a close friend, and so has her husband Jan. Once again, shoes, 
stockings, books and underwear disappeared into Miep's bag and Jan's deep pockets. At 
eleven-thirty they too disappeared. 

I was exhausted, and even though I knew it'd be my last night in my own bed, I fell 
asleep right away and didn't wake up until Mother called me at five-thirty the next 
morning. Fortunately, it wasn't as hot as Sunday; a warm rain fell throughout the day. 

The four of us were wrapped in so many layers of clothes it looked as if we were 
going off to spend the night in a refrigerator, and all that just so we could take more 
clothes with us. No Jew in our situation would dare leave the house with a suitcase 
full of clothes. I was wearing two undershirts, three pairs of underpants, a dress, and 
over that a skirt, a jacket, a raincoat, two pairs of stockings, heavy shoes, a cap, a 
scarf and lots more. I was suffocating even before we left the house, but no one 
bothered to ask me how I felt. 

Margot stuffed her schoolbag with schoolbooks, went to get her bicycle and, with Miep 
leading the way, rode off into the great unknown. At any rate, that's how I thought of 
it, since I still didn't know where our hiding place was. 

At seven-thirty we too closed the door behind us; Moortje, my cat, was the only 
living creature I said good-bye to. According to a note we left for Mr. Goldschmidt, 
she was to be taken to the neighbors, who would give her a good home. 

The stripped beds, the breakfast things on the table, the pound of meat for the cat in 
the kitchen — all of these created the impression that we'd left in a hurry. But we 
weren't interested in impressions. We just wanted to get out of there, to get away and 
reach our destination in safety. Nothing else mattered. 

More tomorrow. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

So there we were, Father, Mother and I, walking in the pouring rain, each of us with 
a schoolbag and a shopping bag filled to the brim with the most varied assortment of 
items. The people on their way to work at that early hour gave us sympathetic looks; 
you could tell by their faces that they were sorry they couldn't offer us some kind of 
transportation; the conspicuous yellow star spoke for itself. 

Only when we were walking down the street did Father and Mother reveal, little by 
little, what the plan was. For months we'd been moving as much of our furniture and 
apparel out of the apartment as we could. It was agreed that we'd go into hiding on 
July 16. Because of Margot's call-up notice, the plan had to be moved up ten days, 
which meant we'd have to make do with less orderly rooms. 

The hiding place was located in Father's office building. That's a little hard for 
outsiders to understand, so I'll explain. Father didn't have a lot of people working in 
his office, just Mr. Kugler, Mr. Kleiman, Miep and a twenty— three— year— old typist 
named Bep Voskuijl, all of whom were informed of our coming. Mr. Voskuijl, Bep's 
father, works in the warehouse, along with two assistants, none of whom were told 

Here's a description of the building. The large warehouse on the ground floor is used 
as a workroom and storeroom and is divided into several different sections, such as 
the stockroom and the milling room, where cinnamon, cloves and a pepper substitute 
are ground. 

Next to the warehouse doors is another outside' door, a separate entrance to the 
office. Just inside the office door is a second door, and beyond that a stairway. At the 
top of the stairs is another door, with a frosted window on which the word "Office" is 
written in black letters. This is the big front office — very large, very light and 
very full. Bep, Miep and Mr. Kleiman work there during the day. After passing through 
an alcove containing a safe, a wardrobe and a big supply cupboard, you come to the 
small, dark, stuffy back office. This used to be shared by Mr. Kugler and Mr. van 
Daan, but now Mr. Kugler is its only occupant. Mr. Kugler's office can also be reached 
from the hallway, but only through a glass door that can be opened from the inside 
but not easily from the outside. If you leave Mr. Kugler's office and proceed through 
the long, narrow hallway past the coal bin and go up four steps, you find yourself in 
the private office, the showpiece of the entire building. Elegant mahogany furniture, a 
linoleum floor covered with throw rugs, a radio, a fancy lamp, everything first class. 
Next door is a spacious kitchen with a hot-water heater and two gas burners, and 
beside that a bathroom. That's the second floor. 

A wooden staircase leads from the downstairs hallway to the third floor. At the top of 
the stairs is a landing, with doors on either side. The door on the left takes you up to 
the spice storage area, attic and loft in the front part of the house. A typically Dutch, 
very steep, ankle-twisting flight of stairs also runs from the front part of the house 
to another door opening onto the street. 

The door to the right of the landing leads to the "Secret Annex" at the back ofthe 
house. No one would ever suspect there were so many rooms behind that plain gray 
door. There's just one small step in front of the door, and then you're inside. Straight 
ahead of you is a steep flight of stairs. To the left is a narrow hallway opening onto 
a room that serves as the Frank family's living 


room and bedroom. Next door is a smaller room, the )edroom and study of the two 
young ladies of the family, ro the right of the stairs is a windowless washroom, with 
a link. The door in the corner leads to the toilet and another one to Margot's and my 
room. If you go up the itairs and open the door at the top, you're surprised to see 
such a large, light and spacious room in an old canalside house like this. It contains a 
stove (thanks to the fact hat it used to be Mr. Kugler's laboratory) and a sink. 

This will be the kitchen and bedroom of Mr. and Mrs. van Daan, as well as the 
general living room, dining room and study for us all. A tiny side room is to be Peter 
van Daan's bedroom. Then, just as in the front part of the building, there's an attic 
and a loft. So there you are. Now I've introduced you to the whole of our lovely 

Yours, Anne 

FRIDAY, JULY 10, 1942 

Dearest Kitty, I've probably bored you with my long description of our house, but I 
still think you should know where I've ended up! how I ended up here is something 
you'll figure out from my next letters. 

But first, let me continue my story, because, as you know, I wasn't finished. After we 
arrived at 263 Prinsengracht, Miep quickly led us through the long hallway and up the 
wooden staircase to the next floor and into the Annex. She shut the door behind us, 
leaving us alone. Margot had arrived much earlier on her bike and was waiting for us. 

Our living room and all the other rooms were so full of stuff that I can't find the 

words to describe it. All the cardboard boxes that had been sent to the office in the 
last few months were piled on the floors and beds. The small room was filled from 

floor to cethng with linens. If we wanted to sleep in properly made beds that night, 

we had to get going and straighten up the mess. Mother and Margot were unable to 
move a muscle. They lay down on their bare mattresses, tired, miserable and I don't 
know what else. But Father and I, the two cleaner- uppers in the family, started in 
right away. 

All day long we unpacked boxes, filled cupboards, hammered nails and straightened up 
the mess, until we fell exhausted into our clean beds at night. We hadn't eaten a hot 
meal all day, but we didn't care! Mother and Margot were too tired and keyed up to 
eat, and Father and I were too busy. 

Tuesday morning we started where we left off the night before. Bep and Miep went 
grocery shopping with our ration coupons, Father worked on our blackout screens, we 
scrubbed the kitchen floor, and were once again busy from sunup to sundown. Until 
Wednesday, I didn't have a chance to think about the enormous change in my life. 
Then for the first time since our arrival in the Secret Annex, I found a moment to tell 
you all about it and to realize what had happened to me and what was yet to happen. 

Yours, Anne 

SATURDAY, JULY 11, 1942 
Dearest Kitty, 

Father, Mother and Margot still can't get used to the chiming of the Westertoren 
clock, which tells us the time every quarter of an hour. Not me, I liked it from the 
start; it sounds so reassuring, especially at night. You no doubt want to hear what I 
think of being in hiding. Well, all I can say is that I don't really know yet. I don't 
think I'll ever feel at home in this house, but that doesn't mean I hate it. It's more 
like being on vacation in some strange pension. Kind of an odd way to look at life in 
hiding, but that's how things are. The Annex is an ideal place to hide in. It may be 
damp and lopsided, but there's probably not a more comfortable hiding place in all of 
Amsterdam. No, in all of Holland. 

Up to now our bedroom, with its blank walls, was very bare. Thanks to Father — 
who brought my entire postcard and movie-star collection here beforehand — and to 
a brush and a pot of glue, I was able to plaster the walls with pictures. It looks much 
more cheerful. When the van Daans arrive, we'll be able to build cupboards and other 
odds and ends out of the wood piled in the attic. 

Margot and Mother have recovered somewhat. Yesterday Mother felt well enough to 
cook split-pea soup for the first time, but then she was downstairstalking and forgot 
all about it. The beans were scorched black, and no amount of scraping could get them 
out of the pan. 

Last night the four of us went down to the private office and listened to England on 
the radio. I was so scared someone might hear it that I literally begged Father to take 
me back upstairs. Mother understood my anxiety and went with me. Whatever we do, 
we're very afraid the neighbors might hear or see us. We started off immediately the 
first day sewing curtains. Actually, you can hardly call them that, since they're nothing 
but scraps of fabric, varying greatly in shape, quality and pattern, which Father and I 
stitched crookedly together with unskilled fingers. These works of art were tacked to 

the windows, where they'll stay until we come out of hiding. 

The building on our right is a branch of the Keg Company, a firm from Zaandam, and 
on the left is a furniture workshop. Though the people who work there are not on the 
premises after hours, any sound we make might travel through the walls. We've 
forbidden Margot to cough at night, even though she has a bad cold, and are giving her 
large doses of codeine. 

I'm looking forward to the arrival of the van Daans, which is set for Tuesday. It will 
be much more fun and also not as quiet. You see, it's the silence that makes me so 
nervous during the evenings and nights, and I'd give anything to have one of our 
helpers sleep here. 

It's really not that bad here, since we can do our own cooking and can listen to the 
radio in Daddy's office. 

Mr. Kleiman and Miep, and Bep Voskuijl too, have helped us so much. We've already 
canned loads of rhubarb, strawberries and cherries, so for the time being I doubt we'll 
be bored. We also have a supply of reading material, and we're going to buy lots of 
games. Of course, we can't ever look out the window or go outside. And we have to 
be quiet so the people downstairs can't hear us. 

Yesterday we had our hands full. We had to pit two crates of cherries for Mr. Kugler 
to can. We're going to use the empty crates to make bookshelves. 

Someone's calling me. 

Yours, Anne 

COMMENT ADDED BY ANNE ON SEPTEMBER 2g, 1942: Not beina able to ao 
outside upsets me more than I can say, and I'm terrified our hidina place will be 
discovered and that we'll be shot. That, of course, is a fairly dismal prospect. 

SUNDAY, JULY 12, 1942 

They've all been so nice to me this last month because of my birthday, and yet every 
day I feel myself drifting further away from Mother and Margot. I worked hard today 
and they praised me, only to start picking on me again five minutes later. 

You can easily see the difference between the way they deal with Margot and the way 
they deal with me. For example, Margot broke the vacuum cleaner, and because of 

that we've been without light for the rest of the day. Mother said, "Well, Margot, it's 
easy to see you're not used to working; otherwise, you'd have known better than to 
yank the plug out by the cord." Margot made some reply, and that was the end of the 

But this afternoon, when I wanted to rewrite something on Mother's shopping list 
because her handwriting is so hard to read, she wouldn't let me. She bawled me out 
again, and the whole family wound up getting involved. 

I don't fit in with them, and I've felt that clearly in the last few weeks. They're so 
sentimental together, but I'd rather be sentimental on my own. They're always saying 
how nice it is with the four of us, and that we get along so well, without giving a 

moment's thought to the fact that I don't feel that way. 

Daddy's the only one who understands me, now and again, though he usually sides 

with Mother and Margot. Another thing I can't stand is having them talk about me in 

front of outsiders, telling them how I cried or how sensibly I'm behaving. It's horrible. 
And sometimes they talk about Moortje and I can't take that at all. Moortje is my 
weak spot. I miss her every minute of the day, and no one knows how often I think 

of her; whenever I do, my eyes fill with tears. Moortje is so sweet, and I love her so 

much that I keep dreaming she'll come back to us. 

I have plenty of dreams, but the reality is that we'll have to stay here until the war 
is over. We can't ever go outside, and the only visitors we can have are Miep, her 
husband Jan, Bep Voskuijl, Mr. Voskuijl, Mr. Kugler, Mr. Kleiman and Mrs. Kleiman, 
though she hasn't come because she thinks it's too dangerous. 

COMMENT ADDED BY ANNE IN SEPTEMBER 1942: Daddy's always so nice. He 
understands me perfectly, and I wish we could have a heart-to-heart talk sometime 
without my bursting instantly into tears. But apparently that has to do with my age. 

I'd like to spend all my time writing, but that would probably get boring. 

Up to now I've only confided my thoughts to my diary. I still haven't gotten around to 
writing amusing sketches that I could read aloud at a later date. In the future I'm 
going to devote less time to sentimentality and more time to reality. 

FRIDAY, AUGUST 14, 1942 

Dear Kitty, 

I've deserted you for an entire month, but so little has happened that I can't find a 

newsworthy item to relate every single day. The van Daans arrived on July 13. We 
thought they were coming on the fourteenth, but from the thirteenth to sixteenth the 
Germans were sending out call-up notices right and left and causing a lot of unrest, 
so they decided it would be safer to leave a day too early than a day too late. 

Peter van Daan arrived at nine-thirty in the morning (while we were still at 
breakfast). Peter's going on sixteen, a shy, awkward boy whose company won't amount 
to much. Mr. and Mrs. van Daan came half an hour later. 

Much to our amusement, Mrs. van Daan was carrying a hatbox with a large chamber 
pot inside. "I just don't feel at home without my chamber pot," she exclaimed, and it 
was the first item to find a permanent place under the divan. Instead of a chamber 
pot, Mr. van D. was lugging a collapsible tea table under his arm. 

From the first, we ate our meals together, and after three days it felt as if the seven 
of us had become one big family. Naturally, the van Daans had much to tell about the 
week we'd been away from civilization. We were especially interested in what had 
happened to our apartment and to Mr. Goldschmidt. 

Mr. van Daan filled us in: "Monday morning at nine, Mr. Goldschmidt phoned and 
asked if I could come over. I went straightaway and found a very distraught Mr. 
Goldschmidt. He showed me a note that the Frank family had left behind. As 
instructed, he was planning to bring the cat to the neighbors, which I agreed was a 
good idea. He was afraid the house was going to be searched, so we w=nt through all 
the rooms, straightening up here and there and clearing the breakfast things off the 
table. Suddenly I saw a notepad on Mrs. Frank's desk, with an address in Maastricht 
written on it. Even though I knew Mrs. Frank had left it on purpose, I pretended to 
be surprised and horrified and begged Mr. Goldschmidt to burn this incriminating piece 
of paper. I swore up and down that I knew nothing about your disappearance, but that 
the note had given me an idea. 'Mr. Goldschmidt,' I said, 'I bet I know what this 
address refers to. About six months ago a high-ranking officer came to the office. It 
seems he and Mr. Frank grew up together. He promised to help Mr. Frank if it was 
ever necessary. As I recall, he was stationed in Maastricht. I think this officer has 
kept his word and is somehow planning to help them cross over to Belgium and then 
to Switzerland. There's no harm in telling this to any friends of the Franks who come 
asking about them. Of course, you don't need to mention the part about Maastricht.' 
And after that I left. This is the story most of your friends have been told, because I 
heard it later from several other people." 

We thought it was extremely funny, but we laughed even harder when Mr. van Daan 
told us that certain people have vivid imaginations. For example, one family living on 

our square claimed they sawall four of us riding by on our bikes early in the morning, 
and another woman was absolutely positive we'd been loaded into some kind of 
military vehicle in the middle of the night. 

Yours, Anne 

FRIDAY, AUGUST 21, 1942 
Dear Kitty, 

Now our Secret Annex has truly become secret. 

Because so many houses are being searched for hidden bicycles, Mr. Kugler thought it 
would be better to have a bookcase built in front of the entrance to our hiding place. 
It swings out on its hinges and opens like a door. Mr. Voskuijl did the carpentry work. 
(Mr. Voskuijl has been told that the seven of us are in hiding, and he's been most 

Now whenever we want to go downstairs we have to duck and then jump. After the 
first three days we were all walking around with bumps on our foreheads from banging 
our heads against the low doorway. Then Peter cushioned it by nailing a towel stuffed 
with wood shavings to the doorframe. Let's see if it helps! 

I'm not doing much schoolwork. I've given myself a vacation until September. Father 
wants to start tutoring me then, but we have to buy all the books first. 

There's little change in our lives here. Peter's hair was washed today, but that's 
nothing special. Mr. van Daan and I are always at loggerheads with each other. Mama 
always treats me like a baby, which I can't stand. For the rest, things are going 
better. I don't think Peter's gotten any nicer. He's an obnoxious boy who lies around 
on his bed all day, only rousing himself to do a little carpentry work before returning 
to his nap. What a dope! 

Mama gave me another one of her dreadful sermons this morning. We take the 
opposite view of everything. Daddy's a sweetheart; he may get mad at me, but it 
never lasts longer than five minutes. 

It's a beautiful day outside, nice and hot, and in spite of everything, we make the 
most of the weather by lounging on the folding bed in the attic. 

Yours, Anne 

COMMENT ADDED BY ANNE ON SEPTEMBER 21, 1942: Mr. van Daan has been as 
nice as pie to me recently. I've said nothina, but have been enjoyina it while it lasts. 

Dearest Kitty, 

Mr. and Mrs. van Daan have had a terrible fight. I've never seen anything like it, since 
Mother and Father wouldn't dream of shouting at each other like that. The argument 
was based on something so trivial it didn't seem worth wasting a single word on it. 
Oh well, to each his own. 

Of course, it's very difficult for Peter, who gets caught in the middle, but no one 
takes Peter seriously anymore, since he's hypersensitive and lazy. Yesterday he was 
beside himself with worry because his tongue was blue instead of pink. This rare 
phenomenon disappeared as quickly as it came. Today he's walking around with a 
heavy scarf on because he's got a stiff neck. His Highness has been complaining of 
lumbago too. Aches and pains in his heart, kidneys and lungs are also par for the 
course. He's an absolute hypochondriac! (That's the right word, isn't it?) 

Mother and Mrs. van Daan aren't getting along very well. There are enough reasons 
for the friction. To give you one small example, Mrs. van D. has removed all but 
three of her sheets from our communal linen closet. She's assuming that Mother's can 
be used for both families. She'll be in for a nasty surprise when she discovers that 
Mother has followed her lead. 

Furthermore, Mrs. van D. is ticked off because we're using her china instead of ours. 
She's still trying to find out what we've done with our plates! they're a lot closer than 
she thinks, since they're packed in cardboard boxes in the attic, behind a load of 
Opekta advertising material. As long as we're in hiding, the plates will remain out of 
her reach. Since I'm always having accidents, it's just as well! Yesterday I broke one 
of Mrs. van D.'s soup bowls. 

"Oh!" she angrily exclaimed. "Can't you be more careful? That was my last one." 

Please bear in mind, Kitty, that the two ladies speak abominable Dutch (I don't dare 
comment on the gentlemen: they'd be highly insulted). If you were to hear their 
bungled attempts, you'd laugh your head off. We've given up pointing out their errors, 
since correcting them doesn't help anyway. Whenever I quote Mother or Mrs. van 
Daan, I'll write proper Dutch instead of trying to duplicate their speech. 

Last week there was a brief interruption in our monotonous routine. This was provided 
by Peter — and a book about women. I should explain that Margot and Peter are 
allowed to read nearly all the books Mr. Kleiman lends us. But the adults preferred to 
keep this special book to themselves. This immediately piqued Peter's curiosity. What 
forbidden fruit did it contain? He snuck off with it when his mother was downstairs 
talking, and took himself and his booty to the loft. For two days all was well. Mrs. 
van Daan knew what he was up to, but kept mum until Mr. van Daan found out about 
it. He threw a fit, took the book away and assumed that would be the end of the 
business. However, he'd neglected to take his son's curiosity into account. Peter, not 
in the least fazed by his father's swift action, began thinking up ways to read the rest 
of this vastly interesting book. 

In the meantime, Mrs. van D. asked Mother for her opinion. Mother didn't think this 
particular book was suitable for Margot, but she saw no harm in letting her read most 
other books. 

You see, Mrs. van Daan, Mother Said, there's a big difference between Margot and 
Peter. To begin with, Margot's a girl, and girls are always more mature than boys. 
Second, she's already read many serious books and doesn't go looking for those which 
are no longer forbidden. Third, Margot's much more sensible and intellectually 

advanced, as a result of her four years at an excellent school." 

Mrs. van Daan agreed with her, but felt it was wrong as a matter of principle to let 
youngsters read books written for adults. 

Meanwhile, Peter had thought of a suitable time when no one would be interested in 
either him or the book. At seven— thirty in the evening, when the entire family was 
listening to the radio in the private office, he took his treasure and stole off to the 
loft again. He should have been back by eight-thirty, but he was so engrossed in the 
book that he forgot the time and was just coming down the stairs when his father 

entered the room. The scene that followed was not surprising: after a slap, a whack 

and a tug-of-war, the book lay on the table and Peter was in the loft. 

This is how matters stood when it was time for the family to eat. Peter stayed 

upstairs. No one gave him a moment's thought; he'd have to go to bed without his 
dinner. We continued eating, chatting merrily away, when suddenly we heard a piercing 
whistle. We lay down our forks and stared at each other, the shock clearly visible on 
our pale faces. 

Then we heard Peter's voice through the chimney: "I won t come down!" 

Mr. van Daan leapt up, his napkin falling to the floor, and shouted, with the blood 
rushing to his face, "I've had enough!" 

Father, afraid of what might happen, grabbed him by the arm and the two men went 
to the attic. After much struggling and kicking, Peter wound up in his room with the 
door shut, and we went on eating. 

Mrs. van Daan wanted to save a piece of bread for her darling son, but Mr. van D. 
was adamant. "If he doesn't apologize this minute, he'll have to sleep in the loft." 

We protested that going without dinner was enough punishment. What if Peter were to 
catch cold? We wouldn't be able to call a doctor. 

Peter didn't apologize, and returned to the loft. 

Mr. van Daan decided to leave well enough alone, though he did note the next morning 
that Peter's bed had been slept in. At seven Peter went to the attic again, but was 
persuaded to come downstairs when Father spoke a few friendly words to him. After 
three days of sullen looks and stubborn silence, everything was back to normal. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Today I'll tell you the general news here in the Annex. A lamp has been mounted 
above my divan bed so that in the future, when I hear the guns going off, I'll be able 

to pull a cord and switch on the light. I can't use it at the moment because we're 

keeping our window open a little, day and night. 

The male members of the van Daan contingent have built a very handy wood-stained 
food safe, with real screens. Up to now this glorious cupboard has been located in 
Peter's room, but in the interests of fresh air it's been moved to the attic. Where it 
once stood, there's now a shelf. I advised Peter to put his table underneath the shelf, 

add a nice rug and hang his own cupboard where the table now stands. That might 

make his little cubbyhole more comfy, though I certainly wouldn't like to sleep there. 

Mrs. van Daan is unbearable. I'm continually being scolded for my incessant chatter 
when I'm upstairs. I simply let the words bounce right off me! Madame now has a 

new trick up her sleeve: trying to get out of washing the pots and pans. If there's a 
bit of food left at the bottom of the pan, she leaves it to spoil instead of transferring 
it to a glass dish. Then in the afternoon when Margot is stuck with cleaning all the 
pots and pans, Madame exclaims, "Oh, poor Margot, you have so much work to do!" 

Every other week Mr. Kleiman brings me a couple of books written for girls my age. 
I'm enthusiastic about the loop ter Heul series. I've enjoyed all of Cissy van 
Marxveldt's books very much. I've read The Zaniest Summer four times, and the 
ludicrous situations still make me laugh. 

Father and I are currently working on our family tree, and he tells me something 
about each person as we go along. I've begun my schoolwork. I'm working hard at 
French, cramming five irregular verbs into my head every day. But I've forgotten much 
too much of what I learned in school. 

Peter has taken up his English with great reluctance. A few schoolbooks have just 
arrived, and I brought a large supply of notebooks, pencils, erasers and labels from 
home. Pirn (that's our pet name for Father) wants me to help him with his Dutch 
lessons. I'm perfectly willing to tutor him in exchange for his assistance with French 
and other subjects. But he makes the most unbelievable mistakes! 

I sometimes listen to the Dutch broadcasts from Fondon. Prince Bernhard recently 
announced that Princess juliana is expecting a baby in January, which I think is 
wonderful. No one here understands why I take such an interest in the Royal Family. 

A few nights ago I was the topic of discussion, and we all decided I was an 
ignoramus. As a result, I threw myself into my schoolwork the next day, since I have 
little desire to still be a freshman when I'm fourteen or fifteen. The fact that I'm 
hardly allowed to read anything was also discussed. At the moment, Mother's reading 
Gentlemen, Wives and Servants, and of course I'm not allowed to read it (though 
Margot is!). First I have to be more intellectually developed, like my genius of a 
sister. Then we discussed my ignorance of philosophy, psychology and physiology (I 
immediately looked up these big words in the dictionary!). It's true, I don't know 
anything about these subjects. But maybe I'll be smarter next year! 

I've come to the shocking conclusion that I have only one long-sleeved dress and 
three cardigans to wear in the winter. Father's given me permission to knit a white 
wool sweater: the yarn isn't very pretty, but it'll be warm, and that's what counts. 
Some of our clothing was left with friends, but unfortunately we won't be able to get 
to it until after the war. Provided it's still there, of course. 

I'd just finished writing something about Mrs. van Daan when she walked into the 
room. Thump, I slammed the book shut. 

"Hey, Anne, can't I even take a peek?" 

"No, Mrs. van Daan." 

"Just the last page then?" 

"No, not even the last page, Mrs. van Daan." 

Of course, I nearly died, since that particular page contained a rather unflattering 
description of her. 

There's something happening every day, but I'm too tired and lazy to write it all 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Father has a friend, a man in his mid— seventies named Mr. Dreher, who's sick, poor 
and deaf as a post. At his side, like a useless appendage, is his wife, twenty- seven 
years younger and equally poor, whose arms and legs are loaded with real and fake 
bracelets and rings left over from more prosperous days. This Mr. Dreher has already 

been a great nuisance to Father, and I've always admired the saintly patience with 

which he handled this pathetic old man on the phone. When we were still living at 

home, Mother used to advise him to put a gramophone in front of the receiver, one 

that would repeat every three minutes, "Yes, Mr. Dreher" and "No, Mr. Dreher," since 
the old man never understood a word of Father's lengthy replies anyway. 

Today Mr. Dreher phoned the office and asked Mr. Kugler to come and see him. Mr. 
Kugler wasn't in the mood and said he would send Miep, but Miep canceled the 
appointment. Mrs. Dreher called the office three times, but since Miep was reportedly 
out the entire afternoon, she had to imitate Bep's voice. Downstairs in the office as 
well as upstairs in the Annex, there was great hilarity. Now each time the phone 
rings, Bep says' 'That's Mrs. Dreher!" and Miep has to laugh, so that the people on 
the other end of the line are greeted with an impolite giggle. Can't you just picture it? 
This has got to be the greatest office in the whole wide world. The bosses and the 

office girls have such fun together! 

Some evenings I go to the van Daans for a little chat. We eat "mothball cookies" 
(molasses cookies that were stored in a closet that was mothproofed) and have a good 
time. Recently the conversation was about Peter. I said that he often pats me on the 
cheek, which I don't like. They asked me in a typically grown-up way whether I 
could ever learn to love Peter like a brother, since he loves me like a sister. "Oh, 
no!" I said, but what I was thinking was, "Oh, ugh!" Just imagine! I added that Peter's 
a bit stiff, perhaps because he's shy. Boys who aren't used to being around girls are 
like that. 

I must say that the Annex Committee (the men's section) is very creative. Listen to 
the scheme they've come up with to get a message to Mr. Broks, an Opekta Co. sales 
representative and friend who's surreptitiously hidden some of our things for us! 
They're going to type a letter to a store owner in southern Zealand who is, indirectly, 
one of Opekta' s customers and ask him to fill out a form and send it back in the 
enclosed self-addressed envelope. Father will write the address on the envelope 
himself. Once the letter is returned from Zealand, the form can be removed and a 
handwritten message confirming that Father is alive can be inserted in the envelope. 
This way Mr. Broks can read the letter without suspecting a ruse. They chose the 
province of Zealand because it's close to Belgium (a letter can easily be smuggled 
across the border) and because no one is allowed to travel there without a special 
permit. An ordinary salesman like Mr. Broks would never be granted a permit. 

Yesterday Father put on another act. Groggy with sleep, he stumbled off to bed. His 
feet were cold, so I lent him my bed socks. Five minutes later he flung them to the 
floor. Then he pulled the blankets over his head because the light bothered him. The 
lamp was switched off, and he gingerly poked his head out from under the covers. It 
was all very amusing. We started talking about the fact that Peter says Margot is a 
"buttinsky." Suddenly Daddy's voice was heard from the depths: "Sits on her butt, you 

Mouschi, the cat, is becoming nicer to me as time goes by, but I'm still somewhat 
afraid of her. 

Yours, Anne 


Dearest Kitty, 

Mother and I had a so-called "discussion" today, but the annoying part is that I burst 
into tears. I can't help it. Daddy is always nice to me, and he also understands me 
much better. At moments like these I can't stand Mother. It's obvious that I'm a 
stranger to her; she doesn't even know what I think about the most ordinary things. 

We were talking about maids and the fact that you're supposed to refer to them as 
"domestic help" these days. She claimed that when the war is over, that's what they'll 
want to be called. I didn't quite see it that way. Then she added that I talk about' 
'later" so often and that I act as if I were such a lady, even though I'm not, but I 
don't think building sand castles in the air is such a terrible thing to do, as long as 
you don't take it too seriously. At any rate, Daddy usually comes to my defense. 
Without him I wouldn't be able to stick it out here. 

I don't get along with Margot very well either. Even though our family never has the 
same kind of outbursts they have upstairs, I find it far from pleasant. Margot's and 
Mother's personalities are so alien to me. I understand my girlfriends better than my 
own mother. Isn't that a shame? 

For the umpteenth time, Mrs. van Daan is sulking. She's very moody and has been 
removing more and more of her belongings and locking them up. It's too bad Mother 
doesn't repay every van Daan "disappearing act" with a Frank "disappearing act." 

Some people, like the van Daans, seem to take special delight not only in raising their 
own children but in helping others raise theirs. Margot doesn't need it, since she's 
naturally good, kind and clever, perfection itself, but I seem to have enough mischief 
for the two of us. More than once the air has been filled with the van Daans' 
admonitions and my saucy replies. Father and Mother always defend me fiercely. 
Without them I wouldn't be able to jump back into the fray with my usual composure. 
They keep telling me I should talk less, mind my own business and be more modest, 
but I seem doomed to failure. If Father weren't so patient, I'd have long ago given up 
hope of ever meeting my parents' quite moderate expectations. 

If I take a small helping of a vegetable I loathe and eat potatoes instead, the van 
Daans, especially Mrs. van Daan, can't get over how spoiled I am. "Come on, Anne, 
eat some more vegetables," she says. 

"No, thank you, ma'am," I reply. "The potatoes are more than enough." 

"Vegetables are good for you; your mother says so too. Have some more," she insists, 
until Father intervenes and upholds my right to refuse a dish I don't like. 

Then Mrs. van D. really flies off the handle: "You should have been at our house, 
where children were brought up the way they should be. I don't call this a proper 
upbringing. Anne is terribly spoiled. I'd never allow that. If Anne were my daughter. . 

This is always how her tirades begin and end: "If Anne were my daughter. . ." Thank 
goodness I'm not. 

But to get back to the subject of raising children, yesterday a silence fell after Mrs. 
van D. finished her little speech. Father then replied, "I think Anne is very well 
brought up. At least she's learned not to respond to your interminable sermons. As far 
as the vegetables are concerned, all I have to say is look who's calling the kettle 

Mrs. van D. was soundly defeated. The pot calling the ketde black refers of course to 
Madame herself, since she can't tolerate beans or any kind of cabbage in the evening 
because they give her "gas." But I could say the same. What a dope, don't you think? 
In any case, let's hope she stops talking about me. 

It's so funny to see how quickly Mrs. van Daan flushes. I don't, and it secredy annoys 
her no end. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

I had to stop yesterday, though I was nowhere near finished. I'm dying to tell you 
about another one of our clashes, but before I do I'd like to say this: I think it's odd 
that grown-ups quarrel so easily and so often and about such petty matters. Up to 
now I always thought bickering was just something children did and that they outgrew 
it. Often, of course, there's sometimes a reason to have a real quarrel, but the verbal 
exchanges that take place here are just plain bickering. I should be used to the fact 
that these squabbles are daily occurrences, but I'm not and never will be as long as 
I'm the subject of nearly every discussion. (They refer to these as "discussions" 
instead of "quarrels," but Germans don't know the difference!) They criticize 
everything, and I mean everything, about me: my behavior, my personality, my 
manners; every inch of me, from head to toe and back again, is the subject of gossip 
and debate. Harsh words and shouts are constantly being flung at my head, though I'm 
absolutely not used to it. According to the powers that be, I'm supposed to grin and 

bear it. But I can't! I have no intention of taking their insults lying down. I'll show 
them that Anne Frank wasn't born yesterday. They'll sit up and take notice and keep 
their big mouths shut when I make them see they ought to attend to their own 
manners instead of mine. How dare they act that way! It's simply barbaric. I've been 
astonished, time and again, at such rudeness and most of all. . . at such stupidity 
(Mrs. van Daan). But as soon as I've gotten used to the idea, and that shouldn't take 
long, I'll give them a taste of their own medicine, and then they'll change their tune! 
Am I really as bad-mannered, headstrong, stubborn, pushy, stupid, lazy, etc., etc., as 
the van Daans say I am? No, of course not. I know I have my faults and 
shortcomings, but they blow them all out of proportion! If you only knew, Kitty, how I 
seethe when they scold and mock me. It won't take long before I explode with 
pent-up rage. 

But enough of that. I've bored you long enough with my quarrels, and yet I can't 
resist adding a highly interesting dinner conversation. 

Somehow we landed on the subject of Pirn's extreme diffidence. His modesty is a 
well-known fact, which even the stupidest person wouldn't dream of questioning. All 
of a sudden Mrs. van Daan, who feels the need to bring herself into every 

conversation, remarked, "I'm very modest and retiring too, much more so than my 

Have you ever heard anything so ridiculous? This sentence clearly illustrates that she's 
not exactly what you'd call modest! 

Mr. van Daan, who felt obliged to explain the "much more so than my husband," 

answered calmly, "I have no desire to be modest and retiring. In my experience, you 

get a lot further by being pushy!" And turning to me, he added, "Don't be modest and 

retiring, Anne. It will get you nowhere." 

Mother agreed completely with this viewpoint. But, as usual, Mrs. van Daan had to add 
her two cents. This time, however, instead of addressing me directly, she turned to 
my parents and said, "You must have a strange outlook on life to be able to say that 
to Anne. Things were different when I was growing up. Though they probably haven't 
changed much since then, except in your modern household!" 

This was a direct hit at Mother's modern child-rearing methods, which she's defended 
on many occasions. Mrs. van Daan was so upset her face turned bright red. People 
who flush easily become even more agitated when they feel themselves getting hot 
under the collar, and they quickly lose to their opponents. 

The nonflushed mother, who now wanted to have the matter over and done with as 
quickly as possible, paused for a moment to think before she replied. "Well, Mrs. van 
Daan, I agree that it's much better if a person isn't overmodest. My husband, Margot 
and Peter are all exceptionally modest. Your husband, Anne and I, though not exactly 
the opposite, don't let ourselves be pushed around." 

Mrs. van Daan: "Oh, but Mrs. Frank, I don't understand what you mean! Honestly, I'm 
extremely modest and retiring. How can you say that I'm pushy?" 

Mother: "I didn't say you were pushy, but no one would describe you as having a 

retiring disposition." 

Mrs. van D.: "I'd like to know in what way I'm pushy! If I didn't look out for myself 

here, no one else would, and I'd soon starve, but that doesn't mean I'm not as modest 

and retiring as your husband." 

Mother had no choice but to laugh at this ridiculous self-defense, which irritated Mrs. 
van Daan. Not exactly a born debater, she continued her magnificent account in a 

mixture of German and Dutch, until she got so tangled up in her own words that she 
finally rose from her chair and was just about to leave the room when her eye fell on 
me. You should have seen her! As luck would have it, the moment Mrs. van D. turned 
around I was shaking my head in a combination of compassion and irony. I wasn't 
doing it on purpose, but I'd followed her tirade so intently that my reaction was 
completely involuntary. Mrs. van D. wheeled around and gave me a tongue-lashing: 
hard, Germanic, mean and vulgar, exactly like some fat, red-faced fishwife. It was a 
joy to behold. If I could draw, I'd like to have sketched her as she was then. She 

struck me as so comical, that silly little scatterbrain! I've learned one thing: you only 

really get to know a person after a fight. Only then can you judge their true 


Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

The strangest things happen to you when you're in hiding! Try to picture this. 
Because we don't have a bathtub, we wash ourselves in a washtub, and because 
there's only hot water in the office (by which I mean the entire lower floor), the 
seven of us take turns making the most of this great opportunity. But since none of 
us are alike and are all plagued by varying degrees of modesty, each member of the 

family has selected a different place to wash. Peter takes a bath in the office kitchen, 
even though it has a glass door. When it's time for his bath, he goes around to each 
of us in turn and announces that we shouldn't walk past the kitchen for the next half 
hour. He considers this measure to be sufficient. Mr. van D. takes his bath upstairs, 
figuring that the safety of his own room outweighs the difficulty of having to carry 
the hot water up all those stairs. Mrs. van D. has yet to take a bath; she's waiting to 
see which is the best place. Father bathes in the private office and Mother in the 
kitchen behind a fire screen, while Margot and I have declared the front office to be 
our bathing grounds. Since the curtains are drawn on Saturday afternoon, we scrub 
ourselves in the dark, while the one who isn't in the bath looks out the window 
through a chink in the curtains and gazes in wonder at the endlessly amusing people. 

A week ago I decided I didn't like this spot and have been on the lookout for more 
comfortable bathing quarters. It was Peter who gave me the idea of setting my 

washtub in the spacious office bathroom. I can sit down, turn on the light, lock the 
door, pour out the water without anyone's help, and all without the fear of being seen. 
I used my lovely bathroom for the first time on Sunday and, strange as it may seem, 
I like it better than any other place. 

The plumber was at work downstairs on Wednesday, moving the water pipes and 
drains from the office bathroom to the hallway so the pipes won't freeze during a cold 
winter. The plumber's visit was far from pleasant. Not only were we not allowed to 
run water during the day, but the bathroom was also off-limits. I'll tell you how we 
handled this problem; you may find it unseemly of me to bring it up, but I'm not so 
prudish about matters of this kind. On the day of our arrival, Father and I improvised 
a chamber pot, sacrificing a canning jar for this purpose. For the duration of the 

plumber's visit, canning jars were put into service during the daytime to hold our calls 

of nature. As far as I was concerned, this wasn't half as difficult as having to sit still 

all day and not say a word. You can imagine how hard that was for Miss Quack, 
Quack, Quack. On ordinary days we have to speak in a whisper; not being able to talk 
or move at all is ten times worse. 

After three days of constant sitting, my backside was stiff and sore. Nightly 
calisthenics helped. 

Yours, Anne 


Dear Kitty, 

Yesterday I had a horrible fright. At eight o'clock the doorbell suddenly rang. All I 
could think of was that someone was coming to get us, you know who I mean. But I 
calmed down when everybody swore it must have been either pranksters or the 

The days here are very quiet. Mr. Levinsohn, a little Jewish pharmacist and chemist, 
is working for Mr. Kugler in the kitchen. Since he's familiar with the entire building, 
we're in constant dread that he'll take it into his head to go have a look at what used 
to be the laboratory. We're as still as baby mice. Who would have guessed three 
months ago that quicksilver Anne would have to sit so quietly for hours on end, and 
what's more, that she could? 

Mrs. van Daan's birthday was the twenty-ninth. Though we didn't have a large 
celebration, she was showered with flowers, simple gifts and good food. Apparently 
the red carnations from her spouse are a family tradition. 

Let me pause a moment on the subject of Mrs. van Daan and tell you that her 
attempts to flirt with Father are a constant source of irritation to me. She pats him on 
the cheek and head, hikes up her skirt and makes so-called witty remarks in an effort 
to get's Pirn's attention. Fortunately, he finds her neither pretty nor charming, so he 
doesn't respond to her flirtations. As you know, I'm quite the jealous type, and I can't 
abide her behavior. After all, Mother doesn't act that way toward Mr. van D., which is 
what I told Mrs. van D. right to her face. 

From time to time Peter can be very amusing. He and I have one thing in common: 
we like to dress up, which makes everyone laugh. One evening we made our 
appearance, with Peter in one of his mother's skin-tight dresses and me in his suit. 
He wore a hat; I had a cap on. The grown-ups split their sides laughing, and we 
enjoyed ourselves every bit as much. 

Bep bought new skirts for Margot and me at The Bijenkorf. The fabric is hideous, like 
the burlap bag potatoes come in. Just the kind of thing the department stores wouldn't 
dare sell in the olden days, now costing 24.00 guilders (Margot's) and 7.75 guilders 

We have a nice treat in store: Bep's ordered a correspondence course in shorthand for 
Margot, Peter and me. Just you wait, by this time next year we'll be able to take 
perfect shorthand. In any case, learning to write a secret code like that is really 

I have a terrible pain in my index finger (on my left hand), so I can't do any ironing. 

What luck! 

Mr. van Daan wants me to sit next to him at the table, since Margot doesn't eat 
enough to suit him. Fine with me, I like changes. There's always a tiny black cat 
roaming around the yard, and it reminds me of my dear sweet Moortje. Another 
reason I welcome the change is that Mama's always carping at me, especially at the 
table. Now Margot will have to bear the brunt of it. Or rather, won't, since Mother 
doesn't make such sarcastic remarks to her. Not to that paragon of virtue! I'm always 
teasing Margot about being a paragon of virtue these days, and she hates it. Maybe 
it'll teach her not to be such a goody-goody. High time she learned. 

To end this hodgepodge of news, a particularly amusing joke told by Mr. van Daan: 
What goes click ninety-nine times and clack once? 

A centipede with a clubfoot. 

Bye-bye, Anne 

Dear Kitty, 

Everybody teased me quite a bit yesterday because I lay down on the bed next to Mr. 
van Daan. "At your age! Shocking! " and other remarks along those lines. Silly, of 
course. I'd never want to sleep with Mr. van Daan the way they mean. 

Yesterday Mother and I had another run-in and she really kicked up a fuss. She told 
Daddy all my sins and I started to cry, which made me cry too, and I already had 
such an awful headache. I finally told Daddy that I love "him" more than I do Mother, 
to which he replied that it was just a passing phase, but I don't think so. I simply 
can't stand Mother, and I have to force myself not to snap at her all the time, and to 
stay calm, when I'd rather slap her across the face. I don't know why I've taken such 
a terrible dislike to her. Daddy says that if Mother isn't feeling well or has a 
headache, I should volunteer to help her, but I'm not going to because I don't love her 
and don't enjoy doing it. I can imagine Mother dying someday, but Daddy's death 
seems inconceivable. It's very mean of me, but that's how I feel. I hope Mother will 
never read this or anything else I've written. 

I've been allowed to read more grown-up books lately. Eva's Youth by Nico van 
Suchtelen is currently keeping me busy. I don't think there's much of a difference 
between this and books for teenage girls. Eva thought that children grew on trees, like 

apples, and that the stork plucked them off the tree when they were ripe and brought 
them to the mothers. But her girlfriend's cat had kittens and Eva saw them coming out 
of the cat, so she thought cats laid eggs and hatched them like chickens, and that 
mothers who wanted a child also went upstairs a few days before their time to lay an 
egg and brood on it. After the babies arrived, the mothers were pretty weak from all 
that squatting. At some point, Eva wanted a baby too. She took a wool scarf and 
spread it on the ground so the egg could fall into it, and then she squatted down and 
began to push. She clucked as she waited, but no egg came out. Finally, after she'd 
been sitting for a long time, something did come, but it was a sausage instead of an 
egg. Eva was embarrassed. She thought she was sick. Funny, isn't it? There are also 
parts of Eva's Youth that talk about women selling their bodies on the street and 
asking loads of money. I'd be mortified in front of a man like that. In addition, it 
mentions Eva's menstruation. Oh, I long to get my period — then I'll really be grown 
up. Daddy is grumbling again and threatening to take away my diary. Oh, horror of 
horrors! From now on, I'm going to hide it. 

Anne Frank 

I imagine that. . . 

I've gone to Switzerland. Daddy and I sleep in one room, while the boys', study is 
turned into a sitting room, where I can receive visitors. As a surprise, they've bought 
new furniture for me, including a tea table, a desk, armchairs and a divan. Everything's 
simply wonderful. After a few days Daddy gives me 150 guilders — converted into 
Swiss money, of course, but I'll call them guilders — and tells me to buy everything 

1 think I'll need, all for myself. (Later on, I get a guilder a week, which I can also 
use to buy whatever I want.) I set off with Bernd and buy: 

3 cotton undershirts @ 0.50 = 1.50 
3 cotton underpants @ 0.50 = 1.50 
3 wool undershirts @ O. 75 = 2.25 
3 wool underpants @ O. 75 = 2.25 

2 petticoats @ 0.50 = 1.00 

2 bras (smallest size) @ 0.50 = 1.00 
5 pajamas @ 1.00 = 5.00 
1 summer robe @ 2.50 = 2.50 

1 winter robe @ 3.00 = 3.00 

2 bed jackets @ O. 75 = 1.50 

. Anne's cousins Bernhard (Bernd) and Stephan Elias. 

1 small pillow @ 1.00 = 1.00 
1 pair of lightweight slippers @ 1.00 = 1.00 
1 pair of warm slippers @ 1.50 = 1.50 
1 pair of summer shoes (school) @ 1.50 = 1.50 
1 pair of summer shoes (dressy) @ 2.00 = 2.00 
1 pair of winter shoes (school) @ 2.50 = 2.50 

1 pair of winter shoes (dressy) @ 3.00 = 3.00 

2 aprons @ 0.50 = 1.00 

25 handkerchiefs @ 0.05 = 1.00 
4 pairs of silk stockings @ 0.75 = 3.00 
4 pairs of kneesocks @ 0.50 = 2.00 
4 pairs of socks @ 0.25 = 1.00 

2 pairs of thick stockings @ 1.00 = 2.00 

3 skeins of white yarn (underwear, cap) = 1.50 
3 skeins of blue yarn (sweater, skirt) = 1.50 

3 skeins of variegated yarn (cap, scarf) = 1.50 
Scarves, belts, collars, buttons = 1.25 

Plus 2 school dresses (summer), 2 school dresses (winter), 2 good dresses 
(sumr.ner), 2 good dresses (winter), 1 summer skirt, 1 good winter skirt, 1 school 
winter skirt, 1 raincoat, 1 summer coat, 1 winter coat, 2 hats, 2 caps. For a total of 
lOg.OO guilders. 

2 purses, 1 ice-skating outfit, 1 pair of skates, 1 case (containing powder, skin 
cream, foundation cream, cleansing cream, suntan lotion, cotton, first-aid kit, rouge, 
lipstick, eyebrow pencil, bath salts, bath powder, eau de cologne, soap, powder puff). 

Plus 4 sweaters @ 1.50,4 blouses @ 1.00, miscellaneous items @ 10.00 and books, 
presents @ 4.50. 

OCTOBER 9, 1942 

Dearest Kitty, 

Today I have nothing but dismal and depressing news to report. Our many Jewish 
friends and acquaintances are being taken away in droves. The Gestapo is treating 
them very roughly and transporting them in cattle cars to Westerbork, the big camp in 
Drenthe to which they're sending all the Jews. Miep told us about someone who'd 
managed to escape from there. It must be terrible in Westerbork. The people get 
almost nothing to eat, much less to drink, as water is available only one hour a day, 

and there's only one toilet and sink for several thousand people. Men and women sleep 
in the same room, and women and children often have their heads shaved. Escape is 
almost impossible; many people look Jewish, and they're branded by their shorn heads. 

If it's that bad in Holland, what must it be like in those faraway and uncivilized places 
where the Germans are sending them? We assume that most of them are being 
murdered. The English radio says they're being gassed. Perhaps that's the quickest 
way to die. 

I feel terrible. Miep's accounts of these horrors are so heartrending, and Miep is also 
very distraught. The other day, for instance, the Gestapo deposited an elderly, crippled 
Jewish woman on Miep's doorstep while they set off to find a car. The old woman 
was terrified of the glaring searchlights and the guns firing at the English planes 
overhead. Yet Miep didn't dare let her in. Nobody would. The Germans are generous 
enough when it comes to punishment. 

Bep is also very subdued. Her boyfriend is being sent to Germany. Every time the 
planes fly over, she's afraid they're going to drop their entire bomb load on Bertus's 
head. Jokes like "Oh, don't worry, they can't all fall on him" or "One bomb is all it 
takes" are hardly appropriate in this situation. Bertus is not the only one being forced 
to work in Germany. Trainloads of young men depart daily. Some of them try to sneak 
off the train when it stops at a small station, but only a few manage to escape 
unnoticed and find a place to hide. 

But that's not the end of my lamentations. Have you ever heard the term "hostages"? 
That's the latest punishment for saboteurs. It's the most horrible thing you can 
imagine. Leading citizens — innocent people — are taken prisoner to await their 
execution. If the Gestapo can't find the saboteur, they simply grab five hostages and 
line them up against the wall. You read the announcements of their death in the paper, 
where they're referred to as "fatal accidents.' 

Fine specimens of humanity, those Germans, and to think I'm actually one of them! 
No, that's not true, Hitler took away our nationality long ago. And besides, there are 
no greater enemies on earth than the Germans and the Jews. 

Yours, Anne 


Dear Kitty, 

I'm terribly busy. Yesterday I began by translating a chapter from La Belle Nivemaise 
and writing down vocabulary words. Then I worked on an awful math problem and 
translated three pages of French grammar besides. Today, French grammar and history. 
I simply refuse to do that wretched math every day. Daddy thinks it's awful too. 

I'm almost better at it than he is, though in fact neither of us is any good, so we 
always have to call on Margot's help. I'm also working away at my shorthand, which I 
enjoy. Of the three of us, I've made the most progress. 

I've read The Storm Family. It's quite good, but doesn't compare to Joop ter Heul. 
Anyway, the same words can be found in both books, which makes sense because 
they're written by the same author. Cissy van Marxveldt is a terrific writer. I'm 
definitely going to let my own children read her books too. 

Moreover, I've read a lot of Korner plays. I like the way he writes. For example, 
Hedwig, The Cousin from Bremen, The Governess, The Green Domino, etc. 

Mother, Margot and I are once again the best of buddies. It's actually a lot nicer that 
way. Last night Margot and I were lying side by side in my bed. It was incredibly 
cramped, but that's what made it fun. She asked if she could read my diary once in a 

"Parts of it," I said, and asked about hers. She gave me permission to read her diary 
as well. 

The conversation turned to the future, and I asked what she wanted to be when she 
was older. But she wouldn't say and was quite mysterious about it. I gathered it had 
something to do with teaching; of course, I'm not absolutely sure, but I suspect it's 
something along those lines. I really shouldn't be so nosy. 

This morning I'lay on Peter's bed, after first having chased him off it. He was furious, 
but I didn't care. He might consider being a little more friendly to me from time to 
time. After all, I did give him an apple last night. 

I once asked Margot if she thought I was ugly. She said that I was cute and had nice 
eyes. A little vague, don't you think? 

Well, until next time! 

Anne Frank 

PS. This morning we all took turns on the scale. Margot now weighs 132 pounds, 
Mother 136, Father 155, Anne 96, Peter 14g, Mrs. van Daan 117, Mr. van Daan 165. 
In the three months since I've been here, I've gained 19 pounds. A lot, huh? 

Dearest Kitty, 

My hand's still shaking, though it's been two hours since we had the scare. I should 
explain that there are five fire extinguishers in the building. The office staff stupidly 
forgot to warn us that the carpenter, or whatever he's called, was coming to fill the 
extinguishers. As a result, we didn't bother to be quiet until I heard the sound of 
hammering on the landing (across from the bookcase). I immediately assumed it was 
the carpenter and went to warn Bep, who was eating lunch, that she couldn't go back 
downstairs. Father and I stationed ourselves at the door so we could hear when the 
man had left. After working for about fifteen minutes, he laid his hammer and some 
other tools on our bookcase (or so we thought!) and banged on our door. We turned 
white with fear. Had he heard something after all and now wanted to check out this 
mysterious-looking bookcase? It seemed so, since he kept knocking, pulling, pushing 
and jerking on it. 

I was so scared I nearly fainted at the thought of this total stranger managing to 
discover our wonderful hiding place. Just when I thought my days were numbered, we 
heard Mr. Kleiman's voice saying, "Open up, it's me." We opened the door at once. 
What had happened? 

The hook fastening the bookcase had gotten stuck, which is why no one had been able 
to warn us about the carpenter. After the man had left, Mr. Kleiman came to get Bep, 
but couldn't open the bookcase. I can't tell you how relieved I was. In my imagination, 
the man I thought was trying to get inside the Secret Annex had kept growing and 
growing until he'd become not only a giant but also the cruelest Fascist in the world. 
Whew. Fortunately, everything worked out all right, at least this time. 

We had lots of fun on Monday. Miep and Jan spent the night with us. Margot and I 
slept in Father and Mother's room for the night so the Gieses could have our beds. 
The menu was drawn up in their honor, and the meal was delicious. The festivities 
were briefly interrupted when Father's lamp caused a short circuit and we were 
suddenly plunged into darkness. What were we to do? We did have fuses, but the fuse 
box was at the rear of the dark warehouse, which made this a particularly unpleasant 
job at night. Still, the men ventured forth, and ten minutes later we were able to put 
away the candles. 

I was up early this morning. Jan was already dressed. Since he had to leave at 
eight-thirty, he was upstairs eating breakfast by eight. Miep was busy getting 
dressed, and I found her in her undershirt when I came in. She wears the same kind 
of long underwear I do when she bicycles. Margot and I threw on our clothes as well 
and were upstairs earlier than usual. After a pleasant breakfast, Miep headed 
downstairs. It was pouring outside and she was glad she didn't have to bicycle to 
work. Daddy and I made the beds, and afterward I learned five irregular French verbs. 
Quite industrious, don't you think? 

Margot and Peter were reading in our room, with Mouschi curled up beside Margot on 
the divan. After my irregular French verbs, I joined them and read The Woods Are 
Singingfor All Eternity. It's quite a beautiful book, but very unusual. I'm almost 

Next week it's Bep's turn to spend the night. 

Yours, Anne 

My dearest Kitty, 

I'm very worried. Father's sick. He's covered with spots and has a high temperature. 
It looks like measles. Just think, we can't even call a doctor! Mother is making him 
perspire in hopes of sweating out the fever. 

This morning Miep told us that the furniture has been removed from the van Daans' 
apartment on Zuider-Amstellaan. We haven't told Mrs. van D. yet. She's been so 
"nervenmassig"* [*nervous] lately, and we don't feel like hearing her moan and groan 
again about all the beautiful china and lovely chairs she had to leave behind. We had 
to abandon most of our nice things too. What's the good of grumbling about it now? 

Father wants me to start reading books by Hebbel and other well-known German 
writers. I can read German fairly well by now, except that I usually mumble the 
words instead of reading them silently to myself. But that'll pass. Father has taken the 
plays of Goethe and Schiller down from the big bookcase and is planning to read to 
me every evening. We've started off with Don Carlos. Encouraged by Father's good 
example, Mother pressed her prayer book into my hands. I read a few prayers in 
German, just to be polite. They certainly sound beautiful, but they mean very little to 
me. Why is she making me act so religious and devout? 

Tomorrow we're going to light the stove for the first time. The chimney hasn't been 
swept in ages, so the room is bound to fill with smoke. Let's hope the thing draws! 

Yours, Anne 

Dear Kitty, 

Bep stayed with us Friday evening. It was fun, but she didn't sleep very well because 
she'd drunk some wine. For the rest, there's nothing special to report. I had an awful 
headache yesterday and went to bed early. Margot's being exasperating again. 

This morning I began sorting out an index card file from the office, because it'd fallen 
over and gotten all mixed up. Before long I was going nuts. I asked Margot and Peter 
to help, but they were too lazy, so I put it away. 

I'm not crazy enough to do it all by myself! 

Anne Frank 

PS. I forgot to mention the important news that I'm probably going to get my period 
soon. I can tell because I keep finding a whitish smear in my panties, and Mother 
predicted it would start soon. I can hardly wait. It's such a momentous event. Too bad 
I can't use sanitary napkins, but you can't get them anymore, and Mama's tampons can 
be used only by women who've had a baby, i 

COMMENT ADDED BY ANNE ON JANUARY 22, 1944: I wouldn't be able to write 
that kind of thing anymore. 

Now that I'm rereading my diary after a year and a half, I'm surprised at my childish 
innocence. Deep down I know I could never be that innocent again, however much I'd 
like to be. I can understand the mood chanaes and the comments about Margot, 
Mother and Father as if I'd written them only yesterday, but I can't imagine writina so 
openly about other matters. It embarrasses me areatly to read the panes dealina with 
subjects that I remembered as beina nicer than they actually were. My descriptions 
are so indelicate. But enouah of that. 

I can also understand my homesickness and yearning for Moortje. The whole time I've 
been here I've longed unconsciously and at times consciously for trust, love and 

physical affection. This longing may change in intensity, but it's always there. 

Dear Kitty, 

The British have finally scored a few successes in Africa and Stalingrad hasn't fallen 
yet, so the men are happy and we had coffee and tea this morning. For the rest, 
nothing special to report. 

This week I've been reading a lot and doing little work. That's the way things ought 
to be. That's surely the road to success. 

Mother and I are getting along better lately, but we're never close. Father's not very 
open about his feelings, but he's the same sweetheart he's always been. We lit the 
stove a few days ago and the entire room is still filled with smoke. I prefer central 
heating, and I'm probably not the only one. Margot's a stinker (there's no other word 
for it), a constant source of irritation, morning, noon and night. 

Anne Frank 

Dearest Kitty, 

Mother's nerves are very much on edge, and that doesn't bode well for me. Is it just 
a coincidence that Father and Mother never scold Margot and always blame me for 
everything? Last night, for example, Margot was reading a book with beautiful 
illustrations; she got up and put the book aside for later. I wasn't doing anything, so I 
picked it up and began looking at the pictures. Margot carne back, saw' "her" book in 
my hands, knitted her brow and angrily demanded the book back. I wanted to look 
through it some more. Margot got madder by the minute, and Mother butted in: 
"Margot was reading that book; give it back to her." 

Father came in, and without even knowing what was going on, saw that Margot was 
being wronged and lashed out at me: "I'd like to see what you'd do if Margot was 
looking at one of your books!" 

I promptly gave in, put the book down and, according to them, left the room' 'in a 
huff." I was neither huffy nor cross, but merely sad. 

It wasn't right of Father to pass judgment without knowing what the issue was. I 
would have given the book to Margot myself, and a lot sooner, if Father and Mother 
hadn't intervened and rushed to take Margot's part, as if she were suffering some 
great injustice. 

Of course, Mother took Margot's side; they always take each other's sides. I'm so 
used to it that I've become completely indifferent to Mother's rebukes and Margot's 
moodiness. I love them, but only because they're Mother and Margot. I don't give a 
darn about them as people. As far as I'm concerned, they can go jump in a lake. It's 
different with Father. When I see him being partial to Margot, approving Margot's 
every action, praising her, hugging her, I feel a gnawing ache inside, because I'm crazy 
about him. I model myself after Father, and there's no one in the world I love more. 
He doesn't realize that he treats Margot differently than he does me: Margot just 
happens to be the smartest, the kindest, the prettiest and the best. But I have a right 
to be taken seriously too. I've always been the clown and mischief maker of the 
family; I've always had to pay double for my sins: once with scoldings and then again 
with my own sense of despair. I'm no longer satisfied with the meaningless affection 
or the supposedly serious talks. I long for something from Father that he's incapable 
of giving. I'm not jealous of Margot; I never have been. I'm not envious of her brains 

or her beauty. It's just that I'd like to feel that Father really loves me, not because 

I'm his child, but because I'm me, Anne. 

I cling to Father because my contempt of Mother is growing daily and it's only 

through him that I'm able to retain the last ounce of family feeling I have left. He 
doesn't understand that I sometimes need to vent my feelings for Mother. He doesn't 
want to talk about it, and he avoids any discussion involving Mother's failings. And yet 
Mother, with all her shortcomings, is tougher for me to deal with. I don't know how I 
should act. I can't very well confront her with her carelessness, her sarcasm and her 
hard-heartedness, yet I can't continue to take the blame for everything. 

I'm the opposite of Mother, so of course we clash. I don't mean to judge her; I don't 
have that right. I'm simply looking at her as a mother. She's not a mother to me — 
I have to mother myself. I've cut myself adrift from them. I'm charting my own 

course, and we'll see where it leads me. I have no choice, because I can picture what 
a mother and a wife should be and can't seem to find anything of the sort in the 
woman I'm supposed to call "Mother." 

I tell myself time and again to overlook Mother's bad example. I only want to see her 
good points, and to look inside myself for what's lacking in her. But it doesn't work, 
and the worst part is that Father and Mother don't realize their own inadequacies and 
how much I blame them for letting me down. Are there any parents who can make 

their children completely happy? 

Sometimes I think God is trying to test me, both now and in the future. I'll have to 
become a good person on my own, without anyone to serve as a model or advise me, 
but it'll make me stronger in the end. 

Who else but me is ever going to read these letters? Who else but me can I turn to 
for comfort? I'm frequently in need of consolation, I often feel weak, and more often 
than not, I fail to meet expectations. I know this, and every day I resolve to do 

They aren't consistent in their treatment of me. One day they say that Anne's a 
sensible girl and entitled to know everything, and the next that Anne's a silly goose 
who doesn't know a thing and yet imagines she's learned all she needs to know from 
books! I'm no longer the baby and spoiled little darling whose every deed can be 
laughed at. I have my own ideas, plans and ideals, but am unable to articulate them 

Oh well. So much comes into my head at night when I'm alone, or during the day 
when I'm obliged to put up with people I can't abide or who invariably misinterpret my 
intentions. That's why I always wind up coming back to my diary — I start there 
and end there because Kitty's always patient. I promise her that, despite everything, 
I'll keep going, that I'll find my own way and choke back my tears. I only wish I 
could see some results or, just once, receive encouragement from someone who loves 

Don't condemn me, but think of me as a person who sometimes reaches the bursting 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Yesterday was Peter's birthday, his sixteenth. I was upstairs by eight, and Peter and I 
looked at his presents. He received a game of Monopoly, a razor and a cigarette 
lighter. Not that he smokes so much, not at all; it just looks so distinguished. 

The biggest surprise came from Mr. van Daan, who reported at one that the English 
had landed in Tunis, Algiers, Casablanca and Oran. 

"This is the beginning of the end," everyone was saying, but Churchill, the British 
Prime Minister, who must have heard the same thing being repeated in England, 
declared, "This is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, 
perhaps, the end of the beginning." Do you see the difference? However, there's 
reason for optimism. Stalingrad, the Russian city that has been under attack for three 
months, still hasn't fallen into 
German hands. 

In the true spirit of the Annex, I should talk to you about food. (I should explain that 
they're real gluttons up on the top floor.) 

Bread is delivered daily by a very nice baker, a friend of Mr. Kleiman's. Of course, 
we don't have as much as we did at home, but it's enough. We also purchase ration 
books on the black market. The price keeps going up; it's already risen from 27 to 33 
guilders. And that for mere sheets of printed paper! 

To provide ourselves with a source of nutrition that will keep, aside from the hundred 
cans of food we've stored here, we bought three hundred pounds of beans. Not just 
for us, but for the office staff as well. We'd hung the sacks of beans on hooks in the 
hallway, just inside our secret entrance, but a few seams split under the weight. So 
we decided to move them to the attic, and Peter was entrusted with the heavy lifting. 
He managed to get five of the six sacks upstairs intact and was busy with the last 
one when the sack broke and a flood, or rather a hailstorm, of brown beans went 
flying through the air and down the stairs. Since there were about fifty pounds of 
beans in that sack, it made enough noise to raise the dead. Downstairs they were sure 
the house was falling down around their heads. Peter was stunned, but then burst into 
peals of laughter when he saw me standing at the bottom of the stairs, like an island 
in a sea of brown, with waves of beans lapping at my ankles. We promptly began 
picking them up, but beans are so small and slippery that they roll into every 
conceivable corner and hole. Now each time we go upstairs, we bend over and hunt 
around so we can present Mrs. van Daan with a handful of beans. 

I almost forgot to mention that Father has recovered from his illness. 

Yours, Anne 

P.S. The radio has just announced that Algiers has fallen. Morocco, Casablanca and 
Oran have been in English hands for several days. We're now waiting for Tunis. 


Dearest Kitty, 

Great news! We're planning to take an eighth person into hiding with us! 

Yes, really. We always thought there was enough room and food for one more person, 
but we were afraid of placing an even greater burden on Mr. Kugler and Mr. Kleiman. 
But since reports of the dreadful things being done to the Jews are getting worse by 

the day, Father decided to sound out these two gentlemen, and they thought it was an 

excellent plan. "It's just as dangerous, whether there are seven or eight," they noted 
rightly. Once this was settled, we sat down and mentally went through our circle of 
acquaintances, trying to come up with a single person who would blend in well with 
our extended family. This wasn't difficult. After Father had rejected all the van Daan 
relatives, we chose a dentist named Alfred Dussel. He lives with a charming Christian 
lady who's quite a bit younger than he is. They're probably not married, but that's 

beside the point. He's known to be quiet and refined, and he seemed, from our 

superficial acquaintance with him, to be nice. Miep knows him as well, so she'll be 
able to make the necessary arrangements. If he comes, Mr. Dussel will have to sleep 
in my room instead of Margot, who will have to make do with the folding bed.* 
[♦After Dussel arrived, Margot slept in her parents' bedroom.] We'll ask him to bring 
along something to fill cavities with. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Miep came to tell us that she'd been to see Dr. Dussel. He asked her the moment she 
entered the room if she knew of a hiding place and was enormously pleased when 
Miep said she had something in mind. She added "that he'd need to go into hiding as 
soon as possible, preferably Saturday, but he thought this was highly improbable, since 
he wanted to bring his records up to date, settle his accounts and attend to a couple 
of patients. Miep relayed the message to us this morning. We didn't think it was wise 
to wait so long. All these preparations require explanations to various people who we 
feel ought to be kept in the dark. Miep went to ask if Dr. Dussel couldn't manage to 
come on Saturday after all, but he said no, and now he's scheduled to arrive on 

I think it's odd that he doesn't jump at our proposal. If they pick him up on the 
street, it won't help either his records or his patients, so why the delay? If you ask 

me, it's stupid of Father to humor him. 

Otherwise, no news. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty! 

Mr. Dussel has arrived. Everything went smoothly. Miep told him to be at a certain 
place in front of the post office at 11 A.M., when a man would meet him, and he was 
at the appointed place at the appointed time. Mr. Kleiman went up to him, announced 
that the man he was expecting to meet was unable to come and asked him to drop by 
the office to see Miep. Mr. Kleiman took a streetcar back to the office while Mr. 
Dussel followed on foot. 

It was eleven-twenty when Mr. Dussel tapped on the office door. Miep asked him to 
remove his coat, so the yellow star couldn't be seen, and brought him to the private 
office, where Mr. Kleiman kept him occupied until the cleaning lady had gone. On the 
pretext that the private office was needed for something else, Miep took Mr. Dussel 
upstairs, opened the bookcase and stepped inside, while Mr. Dussellooked on in 

In the meantime, the seven of us had seated ourselves around the dining table to 
await the latest addition to our family with coffee and cognac. Miep first led him into 
the Frank family's room. He immediately recognized our furniture, but had no idea we 
were upstairs, just above his head. When Miep told him, he was so astonished he 
nearly fainted. Thank goodness she didn't leave him in suspense any longer, but 
brought him upstairs. Mr. Dussel sank into a chair and stared at us in dumbstruck 
silence, as though he thought he could read the truth on our faces. Then he stuttered, 
"Aber . . . but are you nicht in Belgium? The officer, the auto, they were not coming? 
Your escape was not working?" 

We explained the whole thing to him, about how we'd deliberately spread the rumor of 
the officer and the car to throw the Germans and anyone else who might come looking 
for us off the track. Mr. Dussel was speechless in the face of such ingenuity, and 
could do nothing but gaze around in surprise as he explored the rest of our lovely and 
ultrapractical Annex. We all had lunch together. Then he took a short nap, joined us 
for tea, put away the few belongings Miep had been able to bring here in advance and 
began to feel much more at home. Especially when we handed him the following 

typewritten rules and regulations for the Secret Annex (a van Daan production): 


A Unique Facility for the Temporary 
Accommodation of Jews and Other 
Dispossessed Persons 

Open all year round: Located in beautiful, quiet, wooded surroundings in the heart of 
Amsterdam. No private residences in the vicinity. Can be reached by streetcar 13 or 
17 and also by car and bicycle. For those to whom such transportation has been 
forbidden by the German authorities, it can also be reached on foot. Furnished and 
unfurnished rooms and apartments are available at all times, with or without meals. 

Price: Free. 

Diet: Low-fat. 

Runnina water in the bathroom (sorry, no bath) and on various inside and outside 
walls. Cozy wood stoves for heating. 

Ample storage space for a variety of goods. Two large, modern safes. 

Private radio with a direct line to London, New York, Tel Aviv and many other 
stations. Available to all residents after 6 P.M. No listening to forbidden broadcasts, 
with certain exceptions, i.e., German stations may only be tuned in to listen to 
classical music. It is absolutely forbidden to listen to German news bulletins 
(regardless of where they are transmitted from) and to pass them on to others. 

Rest hours: From 10 P.M. to 7:30 A.M.; 10:15 A.M. on Sundays. Owing to 
circumstances, residents are required to observe rest hours during the daytime when 
instructed to do so by the Management. To ensure the safety of all, rest hours must 
be strictly observed!!! 

Free-time activities: None allowed outside the house until further notice. 

Use of language: It is necessary to speak softly at all times. Only the language of 
civilized people may be spoken, thus no German. 

Reading and relaxation: No German books may be read, except for the classics and 
works of a scholarly nature. Other books are optional. 

Calisthenics: Daily. 

Singing: Only softly, and after 6 P.M. 

Movies: Prior arrangements required. 

Classes: A weekly correspondence course in shorthand. Courses in English, French, 
math and history offered at any hour of the day or night. Payment in the form of 
tutoring, e.g., Dutch. 

Separate department for the care of small household pets (with the exception of 
vermin, for which special permits are required). 


Breakfast: At 9 A.M. daily except holidays and Sundays: at approximately 11:30 A.M. 
on Sundays and holidays. 

Lunch: A light meal. From 1:15 P.M. to 1:45 P.M. 

Dinner: Mayor not be a hot meal. 

Mealtime depends on news broadcasts. 

Obligations with respect to the Supply Corps: Residents must be prepared to help with 
office work at all times. Baths: The washtub is available to all residents after 9 A.M. 
on Sundays. Residents may bathe in the bathroom, kitchen, private office or front 
office, as they choose. 

Alcohol: For medicinal purposes only. 

The end. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Just as we thought, Mr. Dussel is a very nice man. Of course he didn't mind sharing a 

room with me; to be honest, I'm not exactly delighted at having a stranger use my 
things, but you have to make sacrifices for a good cause, and I'm glad I can make this 
small one. "If we can save even one of our friends, the rest doesn't matter," said 
Father, and he's absolutely right. 

The first day Mr. Dussel was here, he asked me all sorts of questions — for 
example, what time the cleaning lady comes to the office, how we've arranged to use 
the washroom and when we're allowed to go to the toilet. You may laugh, but these 
things aren't so easy in a hiding place. During the daytime we can't make any noise 
that might be heard downstairs, and when someone else is there, like the cleaning 
lady, we have to be extra careful. I patiently explained all this to Mr. Dussel, but I 
was surprised to see how slow he is to catch on. He asks everything twice and still 
can't remember what you've told him. 

Maybe he's just confused by the sudden change and he'll get over it. Otherwise, 
everything is going fine. 

Mr. Dussel has told us much about the outside world we've missed for so long. He 
had sad news. Countless friends and acquaintances have been taken off to a dreadful 
fate. Night after night, green and gray military vehicles cruise the streets. They knock 
on every door, asking whether any Jews live there. If so, the whole family is 
immediately taken away. If not, they proceed to the next house. It's impossible to 
escape their clutches unless you go into hiding. They often go around with lists, 
knocking only on those doors where they know there's a big haul to be made. They 
frequently offer a bounty, so much per head. It's like the slave hunts of the olden 
days. I don't mean to make light ofthisj it's much too tragic for that. In the evenings 
when it's dark, I often see long lines of good, innocent people, accompanied by crying 
children, walking on and on, ordered about by a handful of men who bully and beat 
them until they nearly drop. No one is spared. The sick, the elderly, children, babies 
and pregnant women — all are marched to their death. 

We're so fortunate here, away from the turmoil. We wouldn't have to give a moment's 
thought to all this suffering if it weren't for the fact that we're so worried about those 
we hold dear, whom we can no longer help. I feel wicked sleeping in a warm bed, 
while somewhere out there my dearest friends are dropping from exhaustion or being 
knocked to the ground. 

I get frightened myself when I think of close friends who are now at the mercy of the 
cruelest monsters ever to stalk the earth. 

And all because they're Jews. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

We don't really know how to react. Up to now very little news about the Jews had 
reached us here, and we thought it best to stay as cheerful as possible. Every now 
and then Miep used to mention what had happened to a friend, and Mother or Mrs. 
van Daan would start to cry, so she decided it was better not to say any more. But 
we bombarded Mr. Dussel with questions, and the stories he had to tell were so 
gruesome and dreadful that we can't get them out of our heads. Once we've had time 
to digest the news, we'll probably go back to our usual joking and teasing. It won't do 
us or those outside any good if we continue to be as gloomy as we are now. And 
what would be the point of turning the Secret Annex into a Melancholy Annex? 

No matter what I'm doing, I can't help thinking about those who are gone. I catch 
myself laughing and remember that it's a disgrace to be so cheerful. But am I 
supposed to spend the whole day crying? No, I can't do that. This gloom will pass. 

Added to this misery there's another, but of a more personal nature, and it pales in 
comparison to the suffering I've just told you about. Still, I can't help telling you that 
lately I've begun to feel deserted. I'm surrounded by too great a void. I never used to 
give it much thought, since my mind was filled with my friends and having a good 
time. Now I think either about unhappy things or about myself. It's taken a while, but 
I've finally realized that Father, no matter how kind he may be, can't take the place of 
my former world. When it comes to my feelings, Mother and Margot ceased to count 
long ago. 

But why do I bother you with this foolishness? I'm terribly ungrateful, Kitty, I know, 
but when I've been scolded for the umpteenth time and have all these other woes to 
think about as well, my head begins to reel! 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

We've been using too much electricity and have now exceeded our ration. The result: 

excessive economy and the prospect of having the electricity cut off. No light for 
fourteen days; that's a pleasant thought, isn't it? But who knows, maybe it won't be so 
long! It's too dark to read after four or four-thirty, so we while away the time with 
all kinds of crazy activities: telling riddles, doing calisthenics in the dark, speaking 
English or French, reviewing books — after a while everything gets boring. Yesterday 
I discovered a new pastime: using a good pair of binoculars to peek into the lighted 
rooms of the neighbors. During the day our curtains can't be opened, not even an inch, 
but there's no harm when it's so dark. 

I never knew that neighbors could be so interesting. Ours are, at any rate. I've come 
across a few at dinner, one family making home movies and the dentist across the 
way working on a frightened old lady. 

Mr. Dussel, the man who was said to get along so well with children and to absolutely 
adore them, has turned out to be an old-fashioned disciplinarian and preacher of 
unbearably long sermons on manners. Since I have the singular pleasure (!) of sharing 
my far too narrow room with His Excellency, and since I'm generally considered to be 
the worst behaved of the three young people, it's all I can do to avoid having the 
same old scoldings and admonitions repeatedly flung at my head and to pretend not to 
hear. This wouldn't be so bad if Mr. Dussel weren't such a tattletale and hadn't 

singled out Mother to be the recipient of his reports. If Mr. Dussel's just read me the 
riot act, Mother lectures me all over again, this time throwing the whole book at me. 
And if I'm really lucky, Mrs. van D. calls me to account five minutes later and lays 
down the law as well! 

Really, it's not easy being the badly brought -up center of attention of a family of 

In bed at night, as I ponder my many sins and exaggerated shortcomings, I get so 

confused by the sheer amount of things I have to consider that I either laugh or cry, 

depending on my mood. Then I fall asleep with the strange feeling of wanting to be 
different than I am or being different than I want to be, or perhaps of behaving 

differently than I am or want to be. 

Oh dear, now I'm confusing you too. Forgive me, but I don't like crossing things out, 
and in these times of 

scarcity, tossing away a piece of paper is clearly taboo. So I can only advise you not 
to reread the above passage and to make no attempt to get to the bottom of it, 
because you'll never find your way out again! 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Hanukkah and St. Nicholas Day nearly coincided this year; they were only one day 
apart. We didn't make much of a fuss with Hanukkah, merely exchanging a few small 
gifts and lighting the candles. Since candles are in short supply, we lit them for only 
ten minutes, but as long as we sing the song, that doesn't matter. Mr. van Daan 
made a menorah out of wood, so that was taken care of too. 

St. Nicholas Day on Saturday was much more fun. During dinner Bep and Miep were 
so busy whispering to Father that our curiosity was aroused and we suspected they 
were up to something. Sure enough, at eight o'clock we all trooped downstairs 
through the hall in pitch darkness (it gave me the shivers, and I wished I was safely 
back upstairs!) to the alcove. We could switch on the light, since this room doesn't 

have any windows. When that was done, Father opened the big cabinet. 

"Oh, how wonderful!" we all cried. 

In the corner was a large basket decorated with colorful paper and a mask of Black 

We quickly took the basket upstairs with us. Inside was a little gift for everyone, 
including an appropriate verse. Since you're famthar with the kinds of poems peo pie 
write each other on St. Nicholas Day, I won't copy them down for you. 

I received a Kewpie doll, Father got bookends, and so on. Well anyway, it was a nice 

idea, and since the eight of us had never celebrated St. Nicholas Day before, this was 
a good time to begin. 

Yours, Anne 

PS. We also had presents for everyone downstairs, a few things .left over from the 
Good Old Days; plus Miep and Bep are always grateful for money. 

Today we heard that Mr. van Daan' s ashtray, Mr. Dussel's picture frame and Father's 
bookends were made by none other than Mr. Voskuijl. How anyone can be so clever 
with his hands is a mystery to me! 


Dearest Kitty, 

Mr. van Daan used to be in the meat, sausage and spice business. He was hired for 
his knowledge of spices, and yet, to our great delight, it's his sausage talents that 
have come in handy now. 

We ordered a large amount of meat (under the counter, of course) that we were 
planning to preserve in case there were hard times ahead. Mr. van Daan decided to 
make bratwurst, sausages and mettwurst. I had fun watching him put the meat 
through the grinder: once, twice, three times. Then he added the remaining ingredi 
ents to the ground meat and used a long pipe to force the mixture into the casings. 
We ate the bratwurst with sauerkraut for lunch, but the sausages, which were going 
to be canned, had to dry first, so we hung them over a pole suspended from the 
cethng. Everyone who came into the room burst into laughter when they saw the 
dangling was such a comical sight. 

The kitchen was a shambles. Mr. van Daan, clad in his wife's apron and looking fatter 
than ever, was working away at the meat. What with his bloody hands, red face and 
spotted apron, he looked like a real butcher. Mrs. D. was trying to do everything at 
once: learning Dutch out of a book, stirring the soup, watching the meat, sighing and 
moaning about her broken rib. That's what happens when old (!) ladies do such stupid 
exercises to get rid of their fat behinds! Dussel had an eye infection and was sitting 
next to the stove dabbing his eye with camomile tea. Pirn, seated in the one ray of 
sunshine coming through the window, kept having to move his chair this way and that 
to stay out of the way. His rheumatism must have been bothering him because he 
was slightly hunched over and was keeping an eye on Mr. van Daan with an agonized 
expression on his face. He reminded me of those aged invalids you see in the 
poor-house. Peter was romping around the room with Mouschi, the cat, while Mother, 
Margot and I were peeling boiled potatoes. When you get right down to it, none of us 
were doing our work properly, because we were all so busy watching Mr. van Daan. 

Dussel has opened his dental practice. Just for fun, I'll describe the session with his 
very first patient. 

Mother was ironing, and Mrs. van D., the first victim, sat down on a chair in the 
middle of the room. Dussel, unpacking his case with an air of importance, asked for 
some eau de cologne, which could be used as a disinfectant, and vaseline, which would 
have to do for wax. He looked in Mrs. van D.'s mouth and found two teeth that made 
her wince with pain and utter incoherent cries every time he touched them. After a 

lengthy examination (lengthy as far as Mrs. van D. was concerned, since it actually 
took no longer than two minutes), Dussel began to scrape out a cavity. But Mrs. van 
D. had no intention of letting him. She flailed her arms and legs until Dussel finally let 
go of his probe and it . . . remained stuck in Mrs. van D.'s tooth. That really did it! 
Mrs. van D. lashed out wildly in all directions, cried (as much as you can with an 
instrument like that in your mouth), tried to remove it, but only managed to push it 
in even farther. Mr. Dussel calmly observed the scene, his hands on his hips, while 
the rest of the audience roared with laughter. Of course, that was very mean of us. 
If it'd been me, I'm sure I would have yelled even louder. After a great deal of 
squirming, kicking, screaming and shouting, Mrs. van D. finally managed to yank the 
thing out, and Mr. Dussel went on with his work as if nothing had happened. He was 
so quick that Mrs. van D. didn't have time to pull any more shenanigans. But then, he 
had more help than he's ever had before: no fewer than two assis tants! Mr. van D. 
and I performed our job well. The whole scene resembled one of those engravings 
from the Middle Ages entitled" A Quack at Work." In the meantime, however, the 
patient was getting restless, since she had to keep an eye on "her" soup and "her" 
food. One thing is certain: it'll be a while before Mrs. van D. makes another dental 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

I'm sitting here nice and cozy in the front office, peering out through a chink in the 
heavy curtains. It's dusky, but there's just enough light to write by. 

It's really strange watching people walk past. They all seem to be in such a hurry 
that they nearly trip over their own feet. Those on bicycles whiz by so fast I can't 
even tell who's on the bike. The people in this neighborhood aren't particularly 
attractive to look at. The children especially are so dirty you wouldn't want to touch 
them with a ten-foot pole. Real slum kids with runny noses. I can hardly understand 
a word they say. 

Yesterday afternoon, when Margot and I were taking a bath, I said, "What if we took 
a fishing rod and reeled in each of those kids one by one as they walked by, stuck 
them in the tub, washed and mended their clothes and then. . ." 

"And then tomorrow they'd be just as dirty and tattered as they were before," Margot 

But I'm babbling. There are also other things to look at cars, boats and the rain. I can 
hear the streetcar and the children and I'm enjoying myself. 

Our thoughts are subject to as little change as we are. They're like a 
merry-go-round, turning from the Jews to food, from food to politics. By the way, 
speaking of Jews, I saw two yesterday when I was peeking through ; the curtains. I 
felt as though I were gazing at one of the Seven Wonders of the World. It gave me 
such a funny feeling, as if I'd denounced them to the authorities and was now spying 
on their misfortune. 

Across from us is a houseboat. The captain lives there with his wife and children. He 
has a small yapping dog. We know the little dog only by its bark and by its tail, 
which we can see whenever it runs around the deck. Oh, what a shame, it's just 
started raining and most of the people are hidden under their umbrellas. All I can see 
are raincoats, and now and again the back of a stocking-capped head. Actually, I 
don't even need to look. By now I can recognize the women at a glance: gone to fat 
from eating potatoes, dressed in a red or green coat and worn-out shoes, a shopping 
bag dangling from their arms, with faces that are either grim or good-humored, 
depending on the mood of their husbands. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

The Annex was delighted to hear that we'll all be receiving an extra quarter pound of 
butter for Christmas. According to the newspaper, everyone is entitled to half a pound, 
but they mean those lucky souls who get their ration books from the government, not 
Jews in hiding like us who can only afford to buy four rather than eight ration books 
on the black market. Each of us is going to bake something with the butter. This 
morning I made two cakes and a batch of cookies. It's very busy upstairs, and 
Mother has informed me that I'm not to do any studying or reading until all the 
household chores have been finished. 

Mrs. van Daan is lying in bed nursing her bruised rib. She complains all day long, 
constantly demands that the bandages be changed and is generally dissatisfied with 
everything. I'll be glad when she gets back on her feet and can clean up after herself 
because, I must admit, she's extraordinarily hardworking and neat, and as long as she's 
in good physical and mental condition, she's quite cheerful. 

As if I don't hear "shh, shh" enough during the day because I'm always making "too 
much" noise, my dear roommate has come up with the idea of saying "shh, shh" to 
me all night too. According to him, I shouldn't even turn over. I refuse to take any 
notice of him, and the next time he shushes me, I'm going to shush him right back. 

He gets more exasperating and egotistical as the days go by. Except for the first 
week, I haven't seen even one of the cookies he so generously promised me. He's 
partic ularly infuriating on Sundays, when he switches on the light at the crack of 
dawn to exercise for ten minutes. 

To me, the torment seems to last for hours, since the chairs I use to make my bed 
longer are constantly being jiggled under my sleepy head. After rounding off his 
limbering-up exercises with a few vigorous arm swings, His Lordship begins dressing. 
His underwear is hanging on a hook, so first he lumbers over to get it and then 
lumbers back, past my bed. But his tie is on the table, so once again he pushes and 
bumps his way past the chairs. 

But I mustn't waste any more of your time griping about disgusting old men. It won't 
help matters anyway. My plans for revenge, such as unscrewing the lightbulb, locking 
the door and hiding his clothes, have unfortu nately had to be abandoned in the 
interests of peace. 

Oh, I'm becoming so sensible! We've got to be reasonable about everything we do 
here: studying, listen ing, holding our tongues, helping others, being kind, making 
compromises and I don't know what else! I'm afraid my common sense, which was in 
short supply to begin with, will be used up too quickly and I won't have any left by 
the time the war is over. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

This morning I was constantly interrupted, and as a result I haven't been able to finish 
a single thing I've begun. 

We have a new pastime, namely, filling packages with powdered gravy. The gravy is 
one of Gies & Co.'s products. Mr. Kugler hasn't been able to find anyone else to fill 
the packages, and besides, it's cheaper if we do the job. It's the kind of work they 

do in prisons. It's incredibly boring and makes us dizzy and giggly. 

Terrible things are happening outside. At any time of night and day, poor helpless 
people are being dragged out of their homes. They're allowed to take only a knapsack 
and a little cash with them, and even then, they're robbed of these possessions on 
the way. Families are torn apart; men, women and children are separated. Children 
come home from school to find that their parents have disap peared. Women return 
from shopping to find their houses sealed, their famthes gone. The Christians in 
Holland are also living in fear because their sons are being sent to Germany. Everyone 
is scared. Every night hundreds of planes pass over Holland on their way to German 
cities, to sow their bombs on German soil. Every hour hundreds, or maybe even 
thousands, of people are being killed in Russia and Africa. No one can keep out of 
the conflict, the entire world is at war, and even though the 

Allies are doing better, the end is nowhere in sight. 

As for us, we're quite fortunate. Luckier than millions of people. It's quiet and safe 
here, and we're using our money to buy food. We're so selfish that we talk about 
"after the war" and look forward to new clothes and shoes, when actually we should 
be saving every penny to help others when the war is over, to salvage whatever we 

The children in this neighborhood run around in thin shirts and wooden shoes. They 
have no coats, no caps, no stockings and no one to help them. Gnawing on a carrot to 
still their hunger pangs, they walk from their cold houses through cold streets to an 
even colder classroom. Things have gotten so bad in Holland that hordes of children 
stop passersby in the streets to beg for a piece of bread. 

I could spend hours telling you about the suffering the war has brought, but I'd only 
make myself more miserable. All we can do is wait, as calmly as possible, for it to 
end. Jews and Christians alike are waiting, the whole world is waiting, and many are 
waiting for death. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

I'm seething with rage, yet I can't show it. I'd like to scream, stamp my foot, give 
Mother a good shaking, cry and I don't know what else because of the nasty words, 

mocking looks and accusations that she hurls at me day after day, piercing me like 
arrows from a tightly strung bow, which are nearly impossible to pull from my body. 
I'd like to scream at Mother, Margot, the van Daans, Dussel and Father too: "Leave 
me alone, let me have at least one night when I don't cry myself to sleep with my 
eyes burning and my head pounding. Let me get away, away from everything, away 
from this world!" But I can't do that. I can't let them see my doubts, or the wounds 
they've inflicted on me. I couldn't bear their sympathy or their good-humored 
derision. It would only make me want to scream even more. 

Everyone thinks I'm showing off when I talk, ridicu lous when I'm silent, insolent 
when I answer, cunning when I have a good idea, lazy when I'm tired, selfish when 
I eat one bite more than I should, stupid, cowardly, calculating, etc., etc. All day long 
I hear nothing but what an exasperating child I am, and although I laugh it off and 
pretend not to mind, I do mind. I wish I could ask God to give me another 
personality, one that doesn't antagonize everyone. 

But that's impossible. I'm stuck with the character I was born with, and yet I'm sure 
I'm not a bad person. I do my best to please everyone, more than they'd ever 
suspect in a million years. When I'm upstairs, I try to laugh it off because I don't 
want them to see my troubles. 

More than once, after a series of absurd reproaches, I've snapped at Mother: "I don't 
care what you say. Why don't you just wash your hands of me — I'm a hopeless 
case." Of course, she'd tell me not to talk back and virtually ignore me for two days. 
Then suddenly all would be forgotten and she'd treat me like everyone else. 

It's impossible for me to be all smiles one day and venomous the next. I'd rather 
choose the golden mean, which isn't so golden, and keep my thoughts to myself. 
Perhaps sometime I'll treat the others with the same contempt as they treat me. Oh, 
if only I could. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Though it's been ages since I've written to you about the squabbles, there's still no 
change. In the begin ning Mr. Dussel took our soon-forgotten clashes very seriously, 
but now he's grown used to them and no longer tries to mediate. 

Margot and Peter aren't exactly what you'd call "young"; they're both so quiet and 
boring. Next to them, I stick out like a sore thumb, and I'm always being told, 
"Margot and Peter don't act that way. Why don't you follow your sister's example!" I 
hate that. 

I confess that I have absolutely no desire to be like Margot. She's too weak-willed 
and passive to suit me; she lets herself be swayed by others and always backs down 
under pressure. I want to have more spunk! But I keep ideas like these to myself. 
They'd only laugh at me if I offered this in my defense. 

During meals the air is filled with tension. Fortunately, the outbursts are sometimes 
held in check by the "soup eaters," the people from the office who come up to have 
a cup of soup for lunch. 

This afternoon Mr. van Daan again brought up the fact that Margot eats so little. "I 
suppose you do it to keep your figure," he added in a mocking tone. 

Mother, who always comes to Margot's defense, said in a loud voice, "I can't stand 
that stupid chatter of yours a minute longer." 

Mrs. van D. turned red as a beet. Mr. van D. stared straight ahead and said nothing. 

Still, we often have a good laugh. Not long ago Mrs. van D. was entertaining us with 
some bit of nonsense or another. She was talking about the past, about how well 
she got along with her father and what a flirt she was. "And you know," she 
continued, "my father told me that if a gentleman ever got fresh, I was to say, 
'Remem ber, sir, that I'm a lady,' and he'd know what I meant." We split our sides 
laughing, as if she'd told us a good joke. 

Even Peter, though he's usually quiet, occasionally gives rise to hilarity. He has the 
misfortune of adoring foreign words without knowing what they mean. One afternoon 
we couldn't use the toilet because there were visitors in the office. Unable to wait, 
he went to the bathroom but didn't flush the toilet. To warn us of the unpleasant 
odor, he tacked a sign to the bathroom door: "RSVP — gas!" Of course, he meant 
"Danger — gas!" but he thought "RSVP" looked more elegant. He didn't have the 
faintest idea that it meant "please reply." 

Yours, Anne 


Dearest Kitty, 

Pim is expecting the invasion any day now. Churchill has had pneumonia, but is 
gradually getting better. Gandhi, the champion of Indian freedom, is on one of his 
umpteenth hunger strikes. 

Mrs. van D. claims she's fatalistic. But who's the most afraid when the guns go off? 
None other than Petronella van Daan. 

Jan brought along the episcopal letter that the bishops addressed to their parishioners. 
It was beautiful and inspiring. "People of the Netherlands, stand up and take action. 
Each of us must choose our own weapons to fight for the freedom of our country, 
our people and our reli gion! Give your help and support. Act now!" This is what 
they're preaching from the pulpit. Will it do any good? It's definitely too late to help 
our fellow Jews. 

Guess what's happened to us now? The owner of the building sold it without informing 
Mr. Kugler and Mr. Kleiman. One morning the new landlord arrived with an architect 
to look the place over. Thank goodness Mr. Kleiman was in the office. He showed the 
gentlemen all there was to see, with the exception of the Secret Annex. He claimed 
he'd left the key at home and the new owner asked no further questions. If only he 
doesn't come back demanding to see the Annex. In that case, we'll be in big trouble! 

Father emptied a card file for Margot and me and filled it with index cards that are 
blank on one side. This is to become our reading file, in which Margot and I are 
supposed to note down the books we've read, the author and the date. I've learned 
two new words: "brothel" and "coquette." I've bought a separate notebook for new 

There's a new division of butter and margarine. Each person is to get their portion on 
their own plate. The distribution is very unfair. The van Daans, who always make 
breakfast for everyone, give themselves one and a half times more than they do us. 
My parents are much too afraid of an argument to say anything, which is a shame, 
because I think people like that should always be given a taste of their own medicine. 

Yours, Anne 


Dearest Kitty, 

Mrs. van D. has a new nickname — we've started calling her Mrs. Beaverbrook. Of 
course, that doesn't mean anything to you, so let me explain. A certain Mr. 
Beaverbrook often talks on the English radio about what he considers to be the far too 
lenient bombardment of Germany. Mrs. van Daan, who always contradicts everyone, 
including Churchill and the news reports, is in complete agreement with Mr. 
Beaverbrook. So we thought it would be a good idea for her to be married to him, and 
since she was flattered by the notion, we've decided to call her Mrs. Beaverbrook 
from now on. 

We're getting a new warehouse employee, since the old one is being sent to 
Germany. That's bad for him but good for us because the new one won't be famthar 
with the building. We're still afraid of the men who work in the warehouse. 

Gandhi is eating again. 

The black market is doing a booming business. If we had enough money to pay the 
ridiculous prices, we could stuff ourselves silly. Our greengrocer buys potatoes from 
the "Wehrmacht" and brings them in sacks to the private office. Since he suspects 
we're hiding here, he makes a point of coming during lunchtime, when the warehouse 
employees are out. 

So much pepper is being ground at the moment that we sneeze and cough with every 
breath we take. Everyone who comes upstairs greets us with an "ah-CHOO." Mrs. van 
D. swears she won't go downstairs; one more whiff of pepper and she's going to get 

I don't think Father has a very nice business. Noth ing but pectin and pepper. As long 
as you're in the food business, why not make candy? 

A veritable thunderstorm of words came crashing down on me again this morning. 
The air flashed with so many coarse expressions that my ears were ringing with 
"Anne's bad this" annd "van Daans' good that." Fire and brimstone! 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

We had a short circuit last night, and besides that, the guns were booming away until 
dawn. I still haven't gotten over my fear of planes and shooting, and I crawl into 

Father's bed nearly every night for comfort. I know it sounds childish, but wait till it 
happens to you! The ack-ack guns make so much noise you can't hear your own 
voice. Mrs. Beaverbrook, the fatalist, practically burst into tears and said in a timid 
little voice, "Oh, it's so awful. Oh, the guns are so loud!" — which is another way 
of saying "I'm so scared." 

It didn't seem nearly as bad by candlelight as it did in the dark. I was shivering, as 
if I had a fever, and begged 

Father to relight the candle. He was adamant: there was to be no light. Suddenly we 
heard a burst of machine-gun fire, and that's ten times worse than antiaircraft guns. 
Mother jumped out of bed and, to Pirn's great annoyance, lit the candle. Her resolute 
answer to his grumbling was, "After all, Anne is not an ex-soldier!" And that was the 
end of that! 

Have I told you any of Mrs. van D.'s other fears? I don't think so. To keep you up 
to date on the latest adventures in the Secret Annex, I should tell you this as well. 
One night Mrs. van D. thought she heard loud footsteps in the attic, and she was so 
afraid of burglars, she woke her husband. At that very same moment, the thieves 
disappeared, and the only sound Mr. van D. could hear was the frightened pounding of 
his fatalistic wife's heart. "Oh, Putti!" she cried. (Putti is Mrs. van D.'s pet name for 
her husband.) "They must have taken all our sausages and dried beans. And what 
about Peter? Oh, do you think Peter's still safe and sound in his bed?" 

"I'm sure they haven't stolen Peter. Stop being such a ninny, and let me get back to 

Impossible. Mrs. van D. was too scared to sleep. 

A few nights later the entire van Daan family was awakened by ghostly noises. Peter 
went to the attic with a flashlight and — scurry, scurry — what do you think he 
saw running away? A whole slew of enormous rats! 

Once we knew who the thieves were, we let Mouschi sleep in the attic and never saw 
our uninvited guests again. . . at least not at night. 

A few evenings ago (it was seven-thirty and still light), Peter went up to the loft to 
get some old newspapers. He had to hold on tightly to the trapdoor to climb down the 
ladder. He put down his hand without looking, and nearly fell off the ladder from 
shock and pain. Without realizing it, he'd put his hand on a large rat, which had bitten 
him in the arm. By the time he reached us, white as a sheet and with his knees 

knocking, the blood had soaked through his pajamas. No wonder he was so shaken, 
since petting a rat isn't much fun, especially when it takes a chunk out of your arm. 

Yours, Anne 

FRIDAY, MARCH 12, 1943 
Dearest Kitty, 

May I introduce: Mama Frank, the children's advocate! Extra butter for the youngsters, 
the problems facing today's youth — you name it, and Mother defends the younger 
generation. After a skirmish or two, she always gets her way. 

One of the jars of pickled tongue is spoiled. A feast for Mouschi and Boche. 

You haven't met Boche yet, despite the fact that she was here before we went into 
hiding. She's the warehouse and office cat, who keeps the rats at bay in the 

Her odd, political name can easily be explained. For a while the firm Gies & Co. had 
two cats: one for the warehouse and one for the attic. Their paths crossed from 
time to time, which invariably resulted in a fight. The warehouse cat was always the 
aggressor, while the attic cat was ultimately the victor, just as in politics. So the 
warehouse cat was named the German, or "Boche," and the attic cat the Englishman, 
or "Tommy." Sometime after that they got rid of Tommy, but Boche is always there 
to amuse us when we go downstairs. 

We've eaten so many brown beans and navy beans that I can't stand to look at 
them. Just thinking about them makes me sick. 

Our evening serving of bread has been canceled. 

Daddy just said that he's not in a very cheerful mood. His eyes look so sad again, the 
poor man! 

I can't tear myself away from the book A Knock at the Door by Ina Bakker Boudier. 
This family saga is extremely well written, but the parts dealing with war, writers and 
the emancipation of women aren't very good. To be honest, these subjects don't 
interest me much. 

Terrible bombing raids on Germany. Mr. van Daan is grouchy. The reason: the 

cigarette shortage. 

The debate about whether or not to start eating the canned food ended in our favor. 

I can't wear any of my shoes, except my ski boots, which are not very practical 
around the house. A pair of straw thongs that were purchased for 6.50 guilders were 
worn down to the soles within a week. Maybe Miep will be able to scrounge up 
something on the black market. 

It's time to cut Father's hair. Pirn swears that I do such a good job he'll never go to 
another barber after the war. If only I didn't nick his ear so often! 

Yours, Anne 

My dearest Kitty, 

Turkey's entered the war. Great excitement. Anxiously awaiting radio reports. 

FRIDAY, MARCH 19, 1943 
Dearest Kitty, 

In less than an hour, joy was followed by disappoint ment. Turkey hasn't entered the 
war yet. It was only a cabinet minister talking about Turkey giving up its neu trality 
sometime soon. The newspaper vendor in Dam Square was shouting "Turkey on 
England's side!" and the papers were being snatched out of his hands. This was how 
we'd heard the encouraging rumor. 

Thousand-guilder notes are being declared invalid. That'll be a blow to the black 
marketeers and others like them, but even more to pe Ie in hiding and anyone else 
with money that can't be accounted for. To turn in a thousand-guilder bill, you have 
to be able to state how you came by it and provide proof. They can still be used to 
pay taxes, but only until next week. The five-hundred notes will lapse at the same 
time. Gies & Co. still had some unaccounted-for thousand- guilder bills, which they 
used to pay their estimated taxes for the coming years, so everything seems to be 

Dussel has received an old-fashioned, foot-operated dentist's drill. That means I'll 
probably be getting a thorough checkup soon. 

Dussel is terribly lax when it comes to obeying the rules of the house. Not only does 
he write letters to his Charlotte, he's also carrying on a chatty correspondence with 
various other people. Margot, the Annex's Dutch teacher, has been correcting these 
letters for him. Father has forbidden him to keep up the practice and Margot has 
stopped correcting the letters, but I think it won't be long before he starts up again. 

The Fuhrer has been talking to wounded soldiers. We listened on the radio, and it was 
pathetic. The questions and answers went something like this: 

"My name is Fleinrich Scheppel." 

"Where were you wounded?" 

"Near Stalingrad." 

"What kind of wound is it?" 

"Two frostbitten feet and a fracture of the left arm." 

This is an exact report of the hideous puppet show aired on the radio. The wounded 
seemed proud of their wounds — the more the better. One was so beside himself at 
the thought of shaking hands (I presume he still had one) with the Fuhrer that he 
could barely say a word. 

I happened to drop Dussel's soap on the floor and step on it. Now there's a whole 
piece missing. I've already asked Father to compensate him for the damages, especially 
since Dussel only gets one bar of inferior wartime soap a month. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Mother, Father, Margot and I were sitting quite pleasantly together last night when 
Peter suddenly came in and whispered in Father's ear. I caught the words "a barrel 
falling over in the warehouse" and "someone fiddling with the door." 

Margot heard it too, but was trying to calm me down, since I'd turned white as chalk 
and was extremely nervous. The three of us waited while Father and Peter went 

downstairs. A minute or two later Mrs. van Daan came up from where she'd been 
listening to the radio and told us that Pirn had asked her to turn it off and tiptoe 
upstairs. But you know what happens when you're trying to be quiet — the old stairs 
creaked twice as loud. Five minutes later Peter and Pirn, the color drained from their 
faces, appeared again to relate their experiences. 

They had positioned themselves under the staircase and waited. Nothing happened. 
Then all of a sudden they heard a couple of bangs, as if two doors had been 
slammed shut inside the house. Pirn bounded up the stairs, while Peter went to warn 
Dussel, who finally pre sented himself upstairs, though not without kicking up a fuss 
and making a lot of noise. Then we all tiptoed in our stockinged feet to the van Daans 
on the next floor. Mr. van D. had a bad cold and had already gone to bed, so we 
gathered around his bedside and discussed our suspicions in a whisper. Every time Mr. 
van D. coughed loudly, Mrs. van D. and I nearly had a nervous fit. He kept coughing 
until someone came up with the bright idea of giving him codeine. His cough subsided 

Once again we waited and waited, but heard nothing. Finally we came to the 
conclusion that the burglars had taken to their heels when they heard footsteps in an 
otherwise quiet building. The problem now was that the chairs in the private office 
were neatly grouped around the radio, which was tuned to England. If the burglars 
had forced the door and the air-raid wardens were to notice it and call the police, 
there could be very serious repercus sions. So Mr. van Daan got up, pulled on his coat 
and pants, put on his hat and cautiously followed Father down the stairs, with Peter 
(armed with a heavy hammer, to be on the safe side) right behind him. The ladies 
(including Margot and me) waited in suspense until the men returned five minutes 
later and reported that there was no sign of any activity in the building. We agreed 
not to run any water or flush the toilet; but since everyone's stomach was churning 
from all the tension, you can imagine the stench after we'd each had a turn in the 

Incidents like these are always accompanied by other disasters, and this was no 
exception. Number one: the Westertoren bells stopped chiming, and I'd always found 
them so comforting. Number two: Mr. Voskuijlleft early last night, and we weren't 
sure if he'd given Bep the key and she'd forgotten to lock the door. 

But that was of little importance now. The night had just begun, and we still weren't 
sure what to expect. We were somewhat reassured by the fact that between 

eight-fifteen — when the burglar had first entered the building and put our lives in 

jeopardy, and ten-thirty, we hadn't heard a sound. The more we thought about it, the 

less likely it seemed that a burglar would have forced a door so early in the evening, 

when there were still people out on the streets. Besides that, it occurred to us that 
the warehouse manager at the Keg Company next door might still have been at work. 
What with the excitement and the thin walls, it's easy to mistake the sounds. 
Besides, your imagination often plays tricks on you in moments of danger. 

So we went to bed, though not to sleep. Father and Mother and Mr. Dussel were 
awake most of the night, and I'm not exaggerating when I say that I hardly got a wink 
of sleep. This morning the men went downstairs to see if the outside door was still 
locked, but all was well! 

Of course, we gave the entire office staff a blow-by-blow account of the incident, 
which had been far from pleasant. It's much easier to laugh at these kinds of things 
after they've happened, and Bep was the only one who took us seriously. 

Yours, Anne 

PS. This morning the toilet was clogged, and Father had to stick in a long wooden 
pole and fish out several pounds of excrement and strawberry recipes (which is what 
we use for toilet paper these days). Afterward we burned the pole. 


Dearest Kitty, 

We've finished our shorthand course and are now working on improving our speed. 
Aren't we smart! Let me tell you more about my "time killers" (this is what I call 
my courses, because all we ever do is try to make the days go by as quickly as 
possible so we are that much closer to the end of our time here). I adore mythology, 
espe dally the Greek and Roman gods. Everyone here thinks my interest is just a 
passing fancy, since they've never heard of a teenager with an appreciation of 
mythology. Well then, I guess I'm the first! 

Mr. van Daan has a cold. Or rather, he has a scratchy throat, but he's making an 
enormous to-do over it. He gargles with camomile tea, coats the roof of his mouth 
with a tincture of myrrh and rubs Mentholatum over his chest, nose, gums and tongue. 
And to top it off, he's in a foul mood! 

Rauter, some German bigwig, recently gave a speech. "All Jews must be out of the 
German-occupied territories before July 1. The province of Utrecht will be cleansed 
of Jews [as if they were cockroaches] between April 1 and May 1, and the provinces 
of North and South Holland between May 1 and June 1." These poor people are being 

shipped off to filthiy slaughterhouses like a herd of sick and neglected cattle. But I'll 
say no more on the subject. My own thoughts give me nightmares! 

One good piece of news is that the Labor Exchange was set on fire in an act of 
sabotage. A few days later the County Clerk's Office also went up in flames. Men 
posing as German police bound and gagged the guards and managed to destroy some 
important documents. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

I'm not really in the mood for pranks (see the date). 

On the contrary, today I can safely quote the saying" Misfortunes never come singly." 
First, Mr. Kleiman, our merry sunshine, had another bout of gastrointestinal 
hemorrhaging yesterday and will have to stay in bed for at least three weeks. I 
should tell you that his stomach has been bothering him quite a bit, and there's no 
cure. Second, Bep has the flu. Third, Mr. Voskuijl has to go to the hospital next week. 
He probably has an ulcer and will have to undergo surgery. Fourth, the managers of 
Pomosin Industries came from Frankfurt to discuss the new Opekta deliveries. Father 
had gone yer the important points with Mr. Kleiman, and there wasn't enough time to 
give Mr. Kugler a thor ough briefing. 

The gentlemen arrived from Frankfurt, and Father was already shaking at the thought 
of how the talks would go. "If only I could be there, if only I were downstairs," he 

"Go lie down with your ear to the floor. They'll be brought to the private office, and 
you'll be able to hear everything.' 

Father's face cleared, and yesterday morning at ten-thirty Margot and Pirn (two ears 
are better than one) took up their posts on the floor. By noon the talks weren't 
finished, but Father was in no shape to continue his listen ing campaign. He was in 
agony from having to lie for hours in such an unusual and uncomfortable position. At 
two-thirty we heard voices in the hall, and I took his place; Margot kept me 
company. The conversation was so long-winded and boring that I suddenly fell asleep 
on the cold, hard linoleum. Margot didn't dare touch me for fear they'd hear us, and of 
course she couldn't shout. I slept for a good half hour and then awoke with a start, 

having forgotten every word of the important discussion. Luckily, Margot had paid 
more attention. 

Yours, Anne 

FRIDAY, APRIL 2, 1943 
Dearest Kitty, 

Oh my, another item has been added to my list of sins. Last night— was lying in bed, 
waiting for Father to tuck me in an say my prayers with me, when Mother came into 
the room, sat on my bed and asked very gently, "Anne, Daddy isn't ready. How about 
if I listen to your prayers tonight?" 

"No, Momsy," I replied. 

Mother got up, stood beside my bed for a moment and then slowly walked toward the 
door. Suddenly she turned, her face contorted with pain, and said, "I don't want to be 
angry with you. I can't make you love me!" A few tears slid down her cheeks as she 
went out the door. 

I lay still, thinking how mean it was of me to reject her so cruelly, but I also knew 

that I was incapable of answering her any other way. I can't be a hypocrite and pray 

with her when I don't feel like it. It just doesn't work that way. I felt sorry for 

Mother — very, very sorry — because for the first time in my life I noticed she 

wasn't indifferent to my coldness. I saw the sorrow in her face when she talked about 

not being able to make me love her. It's hard to tell the truth, and yet the truth is 

that she's the one who's rejected me. She's the one whose tactless comments and 
cruel jokes about matters I don't think are funny have made me insensitive to any sign 

of love on her part. Just as my heart sinks every time I hear her harsh words, that's 

how her heart sank when she realized there was no more love between us. 

She cried half the night and didn't get any sleep. Father has avoided looking at me, 
and if his eyes do happen to cross mine, I can read his unspoken words: "How can 
you be so unkind? How dare you make your mother so sad!" 

Everyone expects me to apologize, but this is not something I can apologize for, 
because I told the truth, and sooner or later Mothjr was bound to find out anyway. I 
seem to be indifferent to Mother's tears and Father's glances, and I am, because both 
of them are now feeling what I've always felt. I can only feel sorry for Mother, who 
will have to figure out what her attitude should be all by herself. For my part, I will 

continue to remain silent and aloof, and I don't intend to shrink from the truth, 
because the longer it's postponed, the harder it will be for them to accept it when 
they do hear it! 

Yours, Anne 

TUESDAY, APRIL 27, 1943 
Dearest Kitty, 

The house is still trembling from the aftereffects of the quarrels. Everyone is mad at 
everyone else: Mother and I, Mr. van Daan and Father, Mother and Mrs. van D. 
Terrific atmosphere, don't you think? Once again Anne's usual list of shortcomings has 
been extensively aired. 

Our German visitors were back last Saturday. They stayed until six. We all sat 
upstairs, not daring to move an inch. If there's no one else working in the building or 
in the neighborhood, you can hear every single step in the private office. I've got 
ants in my pants again from having to sit still so long. 

Mr. Voskuijl has been hospitalized, but Mr. Kleiman's back at the office. His stomach 
stopped bleeding sooner than it normally does. He told us that the County Clerk's 
Office took an extra beating because the firemen flooded the entire building instead of 
just putting out the fire. That does my heart good! 

The Carlton Hotel has been destroyed. Two British planes loaded with firebombs 
landed right on top of the 

German Officers' Club. The entire corner of Vijzelstraat and Singel has gone up in 
flames. The number of air strikes on German cities is increasing daily. We haven't had 
a good night's rest in ages, and I have bags under my eyes from lack of sleep. 

Our food is terrible. Breakfast consists of plain, unbuttered brea and ersatz coffee. For 
the last two weeks lunch has been e. spinach or cooked lettuce with huge potatoes 
that have a rotten, sweetish taste. If you're trying to diet, the Annex is the place to 
be! Upstairs they complain bitterly, but we don't think it's such a tragedy. 

All the Dutch men who either fought or were mobilized in 1940 have been called up 
to work in prisoner-of-war camps. I bet they're taking this precaution because of the 


Yours, Anne 

SATURDAY, MAY 1, 1943 
Dearest Kitty, 

Yesterday was Dussel's birthday. At first he acted as if he didn't want to celebrate it, 
but when Miep arrived with a large shopping bag overflowing with gifts, he was as 
excited as a little kid. His darling' 'Lotje" has sent him eggs, butter, cookies, 
lemonade, bread, cognac, spice cake, flowers, oranges, chocolate, books and writing 
paper. He piled his presents on a table and displayed them for no fewer than three 
days, the silly old goat! 

You mustn't get the idea that he's starving. We found bread, cheese, jam and eggs in 
his cupboard. It's absolutely disgraceful that Dussel, whom we've treated with such 
kindness and whom we took in to save from destruction, should stuff himself behind 
our backs and not give us anything. After all, we've shared all we had with him! But 
what's worse, in our opinion, is that he's so stingy with respect to Mr. Kleiman, Mr. 
Voskuijl and Bep. He doesn't give them a thing. In Dussel's view the oranges that 
Kleiman so badly needs for his sick stomach will benefit his own stomach even more. 

Tonight the guns have been banging away so much that I've already had to gather up 
my belongings four times. Today I packed a suitcase W1 f;the stuff I'd need in case 
we had to flee, but as M ther correctly noted, 

"Where would you go?" 

All of Holland is being punishe or the workers' strikes. Martial law has been declared, 
and everyone is going to get one less butter coupon. What naughty children. 

I washed Mother's hair this evening, which is no easy task these days. We have to 
use a very sticky liquid cleanser because there's no more shampoo. Besides that, 
Moms had a hard time combing her hair because the family comb has only ten teeth 

Yours, Anne 
SUNDAY, MAY 2, 1943 

When I think about our lives here, I usually come to the conclusion that we live in a 
paradise compared to the Jews who aren't in hiding. All the same, later on, when 

everything has returned to normal, I'll probably wonder how we, who always lived in 
such comfortable circumstances, could have "sunk" so low. With respect to manners, I 
mean. For example, the same oilcloth has covered the dining table ever since we've 
been here. After so much use, it's hardly what you'd call spotless. I do my best to 
clean it, but since the dishcloth was also purchased before we went into hiding and 
consists of more holes than cloth, it's a thankless task. The van Daans have been 
sleeping all winter long on the same flannel sheet, which can't be washed because 
detergent is rationed and in short supply. Besides, it's of such poor quality that it's 
practically useless. Father is walking around in frayed trousers, and his tie is also 
showing signs of wear and tear. Mama's corset snapped today and is beyond repair, 
while Margot is wearing a bra that's two sizes too small, Mother and Margot have 
shared the same three undershorts the entire winter, and mine are so small they don't 
even cover my stomach. These are all things that can be overcome, but I sometimes 
wonder: how can we, whose every possession, from my underpants to Father's shaving 
brush, is so old and worn, ever hope to regain the position we had before the war? 

SUNDAY, MAY 2, 1943 

The Attitude of the Annex Residents Toward the War 

Mr. van Daan. In the opinion of us all, this revered gentleman has great insight into 
politics. Nevertheless, he predicts we'll have to stay here until the end of '43. That's 
a very long time, and yet it's possible to hold out until then. But who can assure us 
that this war, which has caused nothing but pain and sorrow, will then be over? And 
that nothing will have happened to us and our helpers long before that time? No one! 
That's why each and every day is filled with tension. Expectation and hope generate 
tension, as does fear — for example, when we hear a noise inside or outside the 
house, when the guns go off or when we read new "proclamations" in the paper, since 
we're afraid our helpers might be forced to go into hiding themselves sometime. These 
days everyone is talking about having to hide. We don't know how many people are 
actually in hiding; of course, the number is relatively small compared to the general 
population, but later on we'll no doubt be astonished at how many good people in 
Holland were willing to take Jews and Christians, with or without money, into their 
homes. There're also an unbelievable number of people with false identity papers. 

Mrs. van Daan. When this beautiful damsel (by her own account) heard that it was 
getting easier these days to obtain false IDs, she immediately proposed that we each 
have one made. As if there were nothing to it, as if Father and Mr. van Daan were 
made of money. 

Mrs. van Daan is always sating the most ridiculous things, and her Putti is often 

exasperated. But that's not surprising, because one day Kerb announces, "When this is 
allover, I'm going to have myself baptized"; and the next, "As long as I can remember, 
I've wanted to go to Jerusalem. I only feel at home with other jews!" 

Pirn is a big optimist, but he always has his reasons. 

Mr. Dussel makes up everything as he goes along, and anyone wishing to contradict 
His Majesty had better think twice. In Alfred Dussel's home his word is law, but that 
doesn't suit Anne Frank in the least. 

What the other members of the Annex family think about the war doesn't matter. 
When it comes to politics, these four are the only ones who count. Actually, only two 
of them do, but Madame van Daan and Dussel include themselves as well. 

TUESDAY, MAY 18, 1943 

Dearest Kit, 

I recently witnessed a fierce dogfight between German and English pilots. 
Unfortunately, a couple of Allied airmen had to jump out of their burning plane. Our 
milkman, who lives in Halfweg, saw four Canadians sitting along the side of the road, 
and one of them spoke fluent Dutch. He asked the milkman if he had a light for his 
cigarette, and then told him the crew had consisted of six men. The pilot had been 
burned to death, and the fifth crew member had hidden himself somewhere. The 
German Security Police came to pick up the four remaining men, none of whom were 
injured. After parachuting out of a flaming plane, how can anyone have such presence 
of mind? 

Although it's undeniably hot, we have to light a fire every other day to burn our 
vegetable peelings and garbage. We can't throw anything into trash cans, because the 
warehouse employees might see it. One small act of carelessness and we're done for! 

All college students are being asked to sign an official statement to the effect that 
they "sympathize with the Germans and approve of the New Order." Eighty percent 
have decided to obey the dictates of their conscience, but the penalty will be severe. 
Any student refusing to sign will be sent to a German labor camp. What's to become 
of the youth of our country if they've all got to do hard labor in Germany? 

Last night the guns were making so much noise that Mother shut the window; I was 
in Pirn's bed. Suddenly, right above our heads, we heard Mrs. van D. leap up, as if 
she'd been bitten by Mouschi. This was followed by a loud boom, which sounded as if 

a firebomb had landed beside my bed. "Lights! Lights!" I screamed. 

Pirn switched on the lamp. I expected the room to burst into flames any minute. 
Nothing happened. We all rushed upstairs to see what was going on. Mr. and Mrs. van 
D. had seen a red glow through the open window, and he thought there was a fire 
nearby, while she was certain our house was ablaze. Mrs. van D. was already standing 
beside her bed with her knees knocking when the boom came. Dussel stayed upstairs 
to smoke a cigarette, and we crawled back into bed. Less than fifteen minutes later 
the shooting started again. Mrs. van D. sprang out of bed and went downstairs to 
Dussel' s room to seek the comfort she was unable to find with her spouse. Dussel 
welcomed her with the words "Come into my bed, my child!" 

We burst into peals of laughter, and the roar of the guns bothered us no more; our 
fears had all been swept away. 

Yours, Anne 

SUNDAY, JUNE 13, 1943 
Dearest Kitty, 

The poem Father composed for my birthday is too nice to keep to myself. 

Since Pirn writes his verses only in German, Margot volunteered to translate it into 
Dutch. See for yourself whether Margot hasn't done herself proud. It begins with the 
usual summary of the year's events and then continues: 

As youngest among us, but small no more, 

Your life can be trying, for we have the chore 
Of becoming your teachers, a terrible bore. 

"We've got experience! Take it from me!" 

"We've done this all before, you see. 

We know the ropes, we know the same." 

Since time immemorial, always the same. 

One's own shortcomings are nothing but fluff, 

But everyone else's are heavier stuff: 

Faultfinding comes easy when this is our plight, 

But it's hard for your parents, try as they might, 

To treat you with fairness, and kindness as well: 

Nitpicking's a habit that's hard to dispel. 

Men you're living with old folks, all you can do 

Is put up with their nagging — it's hard but it's true. 

The pill may be bitter, but down it must go, 

For it's meant to keep the peace, you know. 

The many months here have not been in vain, 

Since wasting time noes against your Brain. 

You read and study nearly all the day, 

Determined to chase the boredom away. 

The more difficult question, much harder to bear, 

Is "What on earth do I have to wear? 

I've got no more panties, my clothes are too tight, 

My shirt is a loincloth, I'm really a siaht! 

To put on my shoes I must off my toes, 

Dh dear, I'm plagued with so many woes!" 

Margot had trouble getting the part about food to rhyme, so I'm leaving it out. But 
aside from that, don't you think it's a good poem? 

For the rest, I've been thoroughly spoiled and have received a number of lovely 
presents, including a big book on my favorite subject, Greek and Roman mythology. 
Nor can I complain about the lack of candy; everyone had dipped into their last 
reserves. As the Benjamin of the Annex, I got more than I deserve. 

Yours, Anne 

TUESDAY, JUNE 15, 1943 
Dearest Kitty, 

Heaps of things have happened, but I often think I'm boring you with my dreary 
chitchat and that you'd just as soon have fewer letters. So I'll keep the news brief. 

Mr. Voskuijl wasn't operated on for his ulcer after all. Once the doctors had him on 
the operating table and opened him up, they saw that he had cancer. It was in such an 
advanced stage that an operation was pointless. So they stitched him up again, kept 
him in the hospital for three weeks, fed him well and sent him back home. But they 
made an unforgivable error: they told the poor man exactly what was in store for him. 
He can't work anymore, and he's just sitting at home, surrounded by his eight children, 
brooding about his approaching death. I feel very sorry for him and hate not being able 
to go out; otherwise, I'd visit him as often as I could and help take his mind off 
matters. Now the good man can no longer let us know what's being said and done in 
the warehouse, which is a disaster for us. Mr. Voskuijl was our greatest source of 

help and suppor when it came to safety measures. We miss him very much. 

Next month it's our turn to hand over our radio to the authorities. Mr. Kleiman has a 
small set hidden in his home that he's giving us to replace our beautiful cabinet radio. 
It's a pity we have to turn in our big Philips, but when you're in hiding, you can't 
afford to bring the authorities down on your heads. Of course, we'll put the "baby" 
radio upstairs. What's a clandestine radio when there are already clandestine Jews and 
clandestine money? 

All over the country people are trying to get hold of an old radio that they can hand 
over instead of their "morale booster." It's true: as the reports from outside grow 
worse and worse, the radio, with its wondrous voice, helps us not to lose heart and to 
keep telling ourselves, "Cheer up, keep your spirits high, things are bound to get 

Yours, Anne 

SUNDAY, JULY 11, 1943 
Dear Kitty, 

To get back to the subject of child-rearing (for the umpteenth time), let me tell you 
that I'm doing my best to be helpful, friendly and kind and to do all I can to keep the 
rain of rebukes down to a light drizzle. It's not easy trying to behave like a model 
child with people you can't stand, especially when you don't mean a word of it. But I 
can see that a little hypocrisy gets me a lot further than myoid method of saying 
exactly what I think (even though no one ever asks my opinion or cares one way or 
another). Of course, I often forget my role and find it impossible to curb my anger 
when they're unfair, so that they spend the next month saying the most impertinent 
girl in the world. Don't you think I'm to be pitied sometimes? It's a good thing I'm not 
the grouchy type, because then I might become sour and bad-tempered. I can usually 
see the humorous side of their scoldings, but it's easier when somebody else is being 
raked over the coals. 

Further, I've decided (after a great deal of thought) to drop the shorthand. First, so 
that I have more time for my other subjects, and second, because of my eyes. That's 
a sad story. I've become very nearsighted and should have had glasses ages ago. 
(Ugh, won't I look like a dope!). But as you know, people in hiding can't. . . 

Yesterday all anyone here could talk about was Anne's eyes, because Mother had 
suggested I go to the ophthalmologist with Mrs. Kleiman. Just hearing this made my 

knees weak, since it's no small matter. Going outside! Just think of it, walking down 
the street! I can't imagine it. I was petrified at first, and then glad. But it's not as 
simple as all that; the various authorities who had to approve such a step were unable 
to reach a quick decision. They first had to carefully weigh all the difficulties and 
risks, though Miep was ready to set off immediately with me in tow. In the meantime, 
I'd taken my gray coat from the closet, but it was so small it looked as if it might 
have belonged to my little sister. We lowered the hem, but I still couldn't button it. 
I'm really curious to see what they decide, only I don't think they'll ever work out a 
plan, because the British have landed in Sicily and Father's all set for a "quick finish." 

Bep's been giving Margot and me a lot of office work to do. It makes us both feel 
important, and it's a big help to her. Anyone can file letters and make entries in a 
sales book, but we do it with remarkable accuracy. 

Miep has so much to carry she looks like a pack mule. She goes forth nearly every 
day to scrounge up vegetables, and then bicycles back with her purchases in large 
shopping bags. She's also the one who brings five library books with her every 
Saturday. We long for Saturdays because that means books. We're like a bunch of 
little kids with a present. Ordinary people don't know how much books can mean to 
someone who's cooped up. 

Our only diversions are reading, studying and listening to the radio. 

Yours, Anne 

TUESDAY, JULY 13, 1943 
The Best Little Table 

Yesterday afternoon Father gave me permission to ask Mr. Dussel whether he would 
please be so good as to allow me (see how polite I am?) to use the table in our room 
two afternoons a week, from four to five-thirty. I already sit there every day from 
two -thirty to four while Dussel takes a nap, but the rest of the time the room and 
the table are off-limits to me. It's impossible to study next door in the afternoon, 
because there's too much going on. Besides, Father sometimes likes to sit at the desk 
during the afternoon. 

So it seemed like a reasonable request, and I asked Dussel very politely. What do you 
think the learned gentleman's reply was? "No." Just plain "No!" 

I was incensed and wasn't about to let myself be put off like that. I asked him the 

reason for his "No," but this didn't get me anywhere. The gist of his reply was: "I 
have to study too, you know, and if I can't do that in the afternoons, I won't be able 
to fit it in at all. I have to finish the task I've set for myself; otherwise, there's no 
point in starting. Besides, you aren't serious about your studies. Mythology — what 
kind of work is that? Reading and knitting don't count either. I use that table and I'm 
not going to give it up!" 

I replied, "Mr. Dussel, I do take my wsork seriously. I can't study next door in the 
afternoons, and I would appreciate it if you would reconsider my request!" 

Having said these words, the insulted Anne turned around and pretended the learned 
doctor wasn't there. I was seething with rage and felt that Dussel had been incredibly 
rude (which he certainly had been) and that I'd been very polite. 

That evening, when I managed to get hold of Pirn, I told him what had happened and 
we discussed what my next step should be, because I had no intention of giving up 
and preferred to deal with the matter myself. Pirn gave me a rough idea of how to 
approach Dussel, but cautioned me to wait until the next day, since I was in such a 
flap. I ignored this last piece of advice and waited for Dussel after the dishes had 
been done. Pirn was sitting next door and that had a calming effect. 

I began, "Mr. Dussel, you seem to believe further discussion of the matter is 
pointless, but I beg you to reconsider." 

Dussel gave me his most charming smile and said, "I'm always prepared to discuss the 
matter, even though it's already been settled." 

I went on talking, despite Dussel's repeated interruptions. When you first came here," 
I said, "we agreed that the room was to be shared by the two of us. If we were to 
divide it fairly, you'd have the entire morning and I'd have the entire afternoon! I'm 
not asking for that much, but two afternoons a week does seem reasonable to me." 

Dussel leapt out of his chair as if he'd sat on a pin. "You have no business talking 
about your rights to the room. Where am I supposed to go? Maybe I should ask Mr. 
van Daan to build me a cubbyhole in the attic. You're not the only one who can't find 
a quiet place to work. You're always looking for a fight. If your sister Margot, who 
has more right to work space than you do, had come to me with the same request, I'd 
never even have thought of refusing, but you. . 

And once again he brought up the business about the mythology and the knitting, and 
once again Anne was insulted. However, I showed no sign of it and let Dussel finish: 

"But no, it's impossible to talk to you. You're shamefully self-centered. No one else 
matters, as long as you get your way. I've never seen such a child. But after all is 
said and done, I'll be obliged to let you have your way, since I don't want people 
saying later on that Anne Frank failed her exams because Mr. Dussel refused to 
relinquish his table!" 

He went on and on until there was such a deluge of words I could hardly keep up. 
For one fleeting moment I thought, "Him and his lies. I'll smack his ugly mug so hard 
he'll go bouncing off the wall!" But the next moment I thought, "Calm down, he's not 
worth getting so upset about!" 

At long last Mr. Dussel' s fury was spent, and he left the room with an expression of 
triumph mixed with wrath, his coat pockets bulging with food. 

I went running over to Father and recounted the entire story, or at least those parts 
he hadn't been able to follow himself, rim decided to talk to Dussel that very same 
evening, and they spoke for more than half an hour. 

They first discussed whether Anne should be allowed to use the table, yes or no. 
Father said that he and Dussel had dealt with the subject once before, at which time 
he'd professed to agree with Dussel because he didn't want to contradict the elder in 
front of the younger, but that, even then, he hadn't thought it was fair. Dussel felt I 
had no right to talk as if he were an intruder laying claim to everything in sight. But 
Father protested strongly, since he himself had heard me say nothing of the kind. And 
so the conversation went back and forth, with Father defending my "selfishness" and 
my "busywork" and Dussel grumbling the whole time. 

Dussel finally had to give in, and I was granted the opportunity to work without 
interruption two afternoons a week. Dussel looked very sullen, didn't speak to me for 
two days and made sure he occupied the table from five to five-thirty — all very 
childish, of course. 

Anyone who's so petty and pedantic at the age of fifty-four was born that way and is 
never going to change. 

FRIDAY, JULY 16, 1943 

Dearest Kitty, 

There's been another break-in, but this time a real one! Peter went down to the 
warehouse this morning at seven, as usual, and noticed at once that both the 

warehouse door and the street door were open. He immediately reported this to Pirn, 
who went to the private office, tuned the radio to a German station and locked the 
door. Then they both went back upstairs. In such cases our orders are not to wash 
ourselves or run any water, to be quiet, to be dressed by eight and not to go to the 
bathroom," and as usual we followed these to the letter. We were all glad we'd slept 
so well and hadn't heard anything. For a while we were indignant because no one from 
the office came upstairs the entire morning; Mr. Kleiman left us on tenterhooks until 
eleven-thirty. He told that the burglars had forced the outside door and the warehouse 
door with a crowbar, but when they didn't find anything worth stealing, they tried 
their luck on the next floor. They stole two cashboxes containing 40 guilders, blank 
checkbooks and, worst of all, coupons for 330 pounds of sugar, our entire allotment. It 
won't be easy to wangle new ones. 

Mr. Kugler thinks this burglar belongs to the same gang as the one who made an 
unsuccessful attempt six weeks ago to open all three doors (the warehouse door and 
the two outside doors). 

The burglary caused another stir, but the Annex seems to thrive on excitement. 
Naturally, we were glad the cash register and the typewriters had been safely tucked 
away in our clothes closet. 

Yours, Anne 

PS. Landing in Sicily. Another step closer to the . . . ! 

MONDAY, JULY 19,1943 
Dearest Kitty, 

North Amsterdam was very heavily bombed on Sunday. There was apparently a great 
deal of destruction. Entire streets are in ruins, and it will take a while for them to dig 
out all the bodies. So far there have been two hundred dead and countless wounded; 
the hospitals are bursting at the seams. We've been told of children searching forlornly 
in the smoldering ruins for their dead parents. It still makes me shiver to think of the 
dull, distant drone that signified the approaching destruction. 

FRIDAY, JULY 23, 1943 

Bep is currently able to get hold of notebooks, especially journals and ledgers, useful 
for my bookkeeping sister! Other kinds are for sale as well, but don't ask what they're 
like or how long they'll last. At the moment \ they're all labeled "No Coupons 

Needed!" Like everything else you can purchase without ration stamps, they're i totally 
worthless. They consist of twelve sheets of gray I paper with narrow lines that slant 
across the page. Margot is thinking about taking a course in calligraphy; I've advised 
her to go ahead and do it. Mother won't let me because of my eyes, but I think that's 
silly. Whether I do I that or something else, it all comes down to the same I thing. 

Since you've never been through a war, Kitty, and since you know very little about 
life in hiding, in spite of my letters, let me tell you, just for fun, what we each want 
to do first when we're able to go outside again. 

Margot and Mr. van Daan wish, above all else, to have a hot bath, filled to the brim, 
which they can lie in for more than half an hour. Mrs. van Daan would like a cake, 
Dussel can think of nothing but seeing his Charlotte, and Mother is dying for a cup of 
real coffee. Father would like to visit Mr. Voskuijl, Peter would go downtown, and as 
for me, I'd be so overjoyed I wouldn't know where to begin. 

Most of all I long to have a home of our own, to be able to move around freely and 
have someone help me with my homework again, at last. In other words, to go back to 

Bep has offered to get us some fruit, at so-called bargain prices: grapes 2.50 guilders 
a pound, gooseberries 70 cents a pound, one peach 50 cents, melons 75 cents a 
pound. No wonder the papers write every evening in big, fat letters: "Keep Prices 
Down! " 

MONDAY, JULY 26, 1943 
Dear Kitty, 

Yesterday was a very tumultuous day, and we're still all wound up. Actually, you may 
wonder if there's ever a day that passes without some kind of excitement. 

The first warning siren went off in the morning while we were at breakfast, but we 
paid no attention, because it only meant that the planes were crossing the coast. I had 
a terrible headache, so I lay down for an hour after breakfast and then went to the 
office at around two. 

At two-thirty Margot had finished her office work and was just gathering her things 
together when the sirens began wailing again. So she and I trooped back upstairs. 
None too soon, it seems, for less than five minutes later the guns were booming so 
loudly that we went and stood in the hall. The house shook and the bombs kept 

falling. I was clutching my "escape bag," more because I wanted to have something to 
hold on to than because I wanted to run away. I know we can't leave here, but if we 

had to, being seen on the streets would be just as dangerous as getting caught in an 

air raid. After half an hour the drone of engines faded and the house began to hum 
with activity again. Peter emerged from his lookout post in the front attic, Dussel 
remained in the front office, Mrs. van D. felt safest in the private office, Mr. van 
Daan had been watching from the loft, and those of us on the landing spread out to 
watch the columns of smoke rising from the harbor. Before long the smell of fire was 
everywhere, and outside it looked as if the city were enveloped in a thick fog. 

A big fire like that is not a pleasant sight, but fortunately for us it was all over, and 

we went baCk to our various chores. Just as we were starting dinner: another air-raid 
alarm. The food was good, but I lost my appetite the moment I heard the siren. 
Nothing happened, however, and forty-five minutes later the all clear was sounded. 
After the dishes had been washed: another air-raid warning, gunfire and swarms of 
planes. "Oh, gosh, twice in one day," we thought, "that's twice in one day," we 
thought, "that's twice too many." Little good that did us, because once agai the bombs 
rained down, this time on the others of the city. According to British reports, Schiphol 
Airport was bombed. The planes dived and climbed, the air was abuzz with the drone 
of engines. It was very scary, and the whole time I kept thinking, "Here it comes, this 
is it." 

I can assure you that when I went to bed at nine, my legs were still shaking. At the 
stroke of midnight I woke up again: more planes! Dussel was undressing, but I took 
no notice and leapt up, wide awake, at the sound of the first shot. I stayed in Father's 
bed until one, in my own bed until one-thirty, and was back in Father's bed at two. 
But the planes kept on coming. At last they stopped firing and I was able to go back 
"home" again. I finally fell asleep at half past two. 

Seven o'clock. I awoke with a start and sat up in bed. Mr. van Daan was with Father. 
My first thought was: burglars. "Everything," I heard Mr. van Daan say, and I thought 
everything had been stolen. But no, this time it was wonderful news, the best we've 
had in months, maybe even since the war began. Mussolini has resigned and the King 
of Italy has taken over the government. 

We jumped for joy. After the awful events of yesterday, finally something good 
happens and brings us. . . hope! Hope for an end to the war, hope for peace. 

Mr. Kugler dropped by and told us that the Fokker aircraft factory had been hit hard. 
Meanwhile, there was another air-raid alarm this morning, with planes flying over, and 
another warning siren. I've had it up to here with alarms. I've hardly slept, and the 

last thing I want to do is work. But now the suspense about Italy and the hope that 
the war will be over by the end of the year are keeping us awake. . 

Yours, Anne 

THURSDAY, JULY 29, 1943 
Dearest Kitty, 

Mrs. van Daan, Dussel and I were doing the dishes, and I was extremely quiet. This 
is very unusual for me and they were sure to notice, so in order to avoid any 
questions, I quickly racked my brains for a neutral topic. I thought the book Henry 
from Across the Street might fit the bill, but I couldn't have been more wrong; if Mrs. 
van Daan doesn't jump down my throat, Mr. Dussel does. It all boiled down to this: 
Mr. Dussel had recommended the book to Margot and me as an example of excellent 
writing. We thought it was anything but that. The little boy had been portrayed well, 
but as for the rest. . . the less said the better. I mentioned something to that effect 
while we were doing the dishes, and Dussel launched into a veritable tirade. 

"How can you possibly understand the psychology of a man? That of a child isn't so 
difficult [!]. But you're far too young to read a book like that. Even a 
twenty-year-old man would be unable to comprehend it." (So why did he go out of 
his way to recommend it to Margot and me?) 

Mrs. van D. and Dussel continued their harangue: "You know way too much about 
things you're not supposed to. You've been brought up all wrong. Later on, when 
you're older, you won't be able to enjoy anything anymore. You'll say, 'Oh, I read that 
twenty years ago in some book.' You'd better hurry if you want to catch a husband or 
fall in love, since everything is bound to be a disappointment to you. You already 
know all there is to know in theory. But in practice? That's another story!" 

Can you imagine how I felt? I astonished myself by calmly replying, "You may think I 
haven't been raised properly, but many people would disagree!" 

They apparently believe that good child-rearing includes trying to pit me against my 
parents, since that's all they ever do. And not telling a girl my age about grown-up 
subjects is fine. We can all see what happens when, people are raised that way. 

At that moment I could have slapped them both for poking fun at me. I was beside 
myself with rage, and if I only knew how much longer we had to put up with each 
other's company, I'd start counting the days. 

Mrs. van Daan's a fine one to talk! She sets an example all right — a bad one! 
She's known to be exceedingly pushy, egotistical, cunning, calculating and perpetually 
dissatisfied. Add to that, vanity and coquettishness and there's no question about it: 
she's a thoroughly despicable person. I could write an entire book about Madame van 
Daan, and who knows, maybe someday I will. Anyone can put on a charming exterior 
when they want to. Mrs. van D. is friendly to strangers, especially men, so it's easy 
to make a mistake when you first get to know her. 

Mother thinks that Mrs. van D. is too stupid for words, Margot that she's too 
unimportant, Pirn that she's too ugly (literally and figuratively!), and after long 
observation (I'm never prejudiced at the beginning), I've come to the conclusion that 
she's all three of the above, and lots more besides. She has so many bad traits, why 
should I single out just one of them? 

Yours, Anne 

P.S. Will the reader please take into consideration that this story was written before 
the writer's fury had cooled? 


Dearest Kitty, 

Things are going well on the political front. Italy has banned the Fascist Party. The 

people are fighting the Fascists in many places — even the army has joined the 

fight. How can a country like that continue to wage war against England? 

Our beautiful radio was taken away last week. Dussel was very angry at Mr. Kugler 
for turning it in on the appointed day. Dussel is slipping lower and lower in my 

estimation, and he's already below zero, hatever he says about politics, history, 
geography or ything else is so ridiculous that I hardly dare repeat it: Hitler will fade 
from history; the harbor in Rotterdam is bigger than the one in Hamburg; the English 
are idiots for not taking the opportunity to bomb Italy to smithereens; etc., etc. 

We just had a third air raid. I decided to grit my teeth and practice being courageous. 

Mrs. van Daan, the one who always said "Let them fall" and "Better to end with a 
bang than not to end at all," is the most cowardly one among us. She was shaking like 
a leaf this morning and even burst into tears. She was comforted by her husband, with 
whom she recently declared a truce after a week of squabbling; I nearly got 

sentimental at the sight. 

Mouschi has now proved, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that having a cat has 
disadvantages as well as advantages. The whole house is crawling with fleas, and it's 
getting worse each day. Mr. Kleiman sprinkled yellow powder in every nook and 
cranny, but the fleas haven't taken the slightest notice. It's making us all very jittery; 
we're forever imagining a bite on our arms and legs or other parts of our bodies, so 
we leap up and do a few exercises, since it gives us an excuse to take a better look 
at our arms or necks. But now we're paying the price for having had so little physical 
exercise; we're so stiff we can hardly turn our heads. The real calisthenics fell by the 
wayside long ago. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Now that we've been in hiding for a little over a year, you know a great deal about 
our lives. Still, I can't possibly tell you everything, since it's all so different compared 
to ordinary times and ordinary people. Nevertheless, to give you a closer look into our 
lives, from time to time I'll describe part of an ordinary day. I'll start with the 
evening and night. 

Nine in the evening. Bedtime always begins in the Annex with an enormous hustle and 
bustle. Chairs are shifted, beds pulled out, blankets unfolded — nothing stays where 
it is during the daytime. I sleep on a small divan, which is only five feet long, so we 
have to add a few chairs to make it longer. Comforter, sheets, pillows, blankets: 
everything has to be removed from Dussel' s bed, where it's kept during the day. 

In the next room there's a terrible creaking: that's Margot's folding bed being set up. 
More blankets and pillows, anything to make the wooden slats a bit more comfortable. 
Upstairs it sounds like thunder, but it's only Mrs. van D.'s bed being shoved against 
the window so that Her Majesty, arrayed in her pink bed jacket, can sniff the night air 
through her delicate little nostrils. 

Nine o'clock. After Peter's finished, it's my turn for the bathroom. I wash myself from 
head to toe, and more often than not I find a tiny flea floating in the sink (only 
during the hot months, weeks or days). I brush my teeth, curl my hair, manicure my 
nails and dab peroxide on my upper lip to bleach the black hairs — all this in less 
than half an hour. 

Nine-thirty. I throw on my bathrobe. With soap in one hand, and potty, hairpins, 
panties, curlers and a wad of cotton in the other, I hurry out of the bathroom. The 
next in line invariably calls me back to remove the gracefully curved but unsightly 
hairs that I've left in the sink. 

Ten o'clock. Time to put up the blackout screen and say good-night. For the next 
fifteen minutes, at least, the house is filled with the creaking of beds and the sigh of 
broken springs, and then, provided our upstairs neighbors aren't having a marital spat 
in bed, all is quiet. 

Eleven— thirty. The bathroom door creaks. A narrow strip of light falls into the room. 
Squeaking shoes, a large coat, even larger than the man inside it . . . Dussel is 
returning from his nightly work in Mr. Kugler's office. I hear him shuffiing back and 
forth for ten whole minutes, the rustle of paper (from the food he's tucking away in 
his cupboard) and the bed being made up. Then the figure disappears again, and the 
only sound is the occasional suspicious noise from the bathroom. 

Approximately three o'clock. I have to get up to use the tin can under my bed, which, 
to be on the safe side, has a rubber mat underneath in case of leaks. I always hold 
my breath while I go, since it clatters into the can like a brook down a mountainside. 
The potty is returned to its place, and the figure in the white nightgown (the one that 
causes Margot to exclaim every evening, "Oh, that indecent nighty!") climbs back into 
bed. A certain somebody lies awake for about fifteen minutes, listening to the sounds 
of the night. In the first place, to hear whether there are any burglars downstairs, and 
then to the various beds — upstairs, next door and in my room — to tell whether 
the others are asleep or half awake. This is no fun, especially when it concerns a 
member of the family named Dr. Dussel. First, there's the sound of a fish gasping for 
air, and this is repeated nine or ten times. Then, the lips are moistened profusely. 
This is alternated with little smacking sounds, followed by a long period of tossing and 
turning and rearranging the pillows. After five minutes of perfect quiet, the same 
sequence repeats itself three more times, after which he's presumably lulled himself 
back to sleep for a while. 

Sometimes the guns go off during the night, between one and four. I'm never aware of 
it before it happens, but all of a sudden I find myself standing beside my bed, out of 
sheer habit. Occasionally I'm dreaming so deeply (of irregular French verbs or a 
quarrel upstairs) that I realize only when my dream is over that the shooting has 
stopped and that I've remained quietly in my room. But usually I wake up. Then I 
grab a pillow and a handkerchief, throw on my robe and slippers and dash next door 
to Father, just the way Margot described in this birthday poem: 

When shots rino out in the dark of night, 

The door creaks open and into sight 
Come a hanky, a pillow, a figure in white. . . 

Once I've reached the big bed, the worst is over, except when the shooting is extra 

Six forty — five. Brrring . . . the alarm clock, which raises its shrill voice at any hour 
of the day or night, whether you want it to or not. Creak. . . wham. . . Mrs. van D. 
turns it off. Screak . . . Mr. van D. gets up, puts on the water and races to the 

Seven-fifteen. The door creaks again. Dussel can go to the bathroom. Alone at last, I 
remove the blackout screen . . . and a new day begins in the Annex. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Today let's talk about the lunch break. 

It's twelve-thirty. The whole gang breathes a sigh of relief: Mr. van Maaren, the man 
with the shady past, and 

Mr. de Kok have gone home for lunch. 

Upstairs you can hear the thud of the vacuum cleaner on Mrs. van D.'s beautiful and 
only rug. Margot tucks a few books under her arm and heads for the class for "slow 
learners," which is what Dussel seems to be. Pirn goes and sits in a corner with his 
constant companion, Dickens, in hopes of finding a bit of peace and quiet. Mother 
hastens upstairs to help the busy little housewife, and I tidy up both the bathroom and 
myself at the same time. 

Twelve forty— five. One by one they trickle in: first Mr. 

Gies and then either Mr. Kleiman or Mr. Kugler, followed by Bep and sometimes even 

One. Clustered around the radio, they all listen raptly to the BBC. This is the only 
time the members of the Annex family don't interrupt each other, since even Mr. van 
Daan can't argue with the speaker. 

One-fifteen. Food distribution. Everyone from downstairs gets a cup of soup, plus 
dessert, if there happens to be any. A contented Mr. Gies sits on the divan or leans 
against the desk with his newspaper, cup and usually the cat at his side. If one of the 
three is missing, he doesn't hesitate to let his protest be heard. Mr. Kleiman relates 
the latest news from town, and he's an excellent source. Mr. Kugler hurries up the 
stairs, gives a short but solid knock on the door and comes in either wringing his 
hands or rubbing them in glee, depending on whether he's quiet and in a bad mood or 
talkative and in a good mood. 

One forty-five. Everyone rises from the table and goes about their business. Margot 
and Mother do the dishes, Mr. and Mrs. van D. head for the divan, Peter for the attic, 
Father for his divan, Dussel too, and Anne does her homework. 

What comes next is the quietest hour of the day; when they're all asleep, there are 
no disturbances. To judge by his face, Dussel is dreaming of food. But I don't look at 
him long, because the time whizzes by and before you know it, it'll be 4 P.M. and the 
pedantic Dr. Dussel will be standing with the clock in his hand because I'm one minute 
date clearing off the table. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

A few weeks ago I started writing a story, something I made up from beginning to 
end, and I've enjoyed it so much that the products of my pen are piling up. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

We now continue with a typical day in the Annex. Since we've already had lunch, it's 
time to describe dinner. 

Mr. van Daan. Is served first, and takes a generous portion of whatever he likes. 
Usually joins in the conversation, never fails to give his opinion. Once he's spoken, his 
word is final. If anyone dares to suggest otherwise, Mr. van D. can put up a good 
fight. Oh, he can hiss like a cat. . . but I'd rather he didn't. Once you've seen it, you 
never want to see it again. His opinion is the best, he knows the most about 
everything. Granted, the man has a good head on his shoulders, but it's swelled to no 
small degree. 

Madame. Actually, the best thing would be to say nothing. Some days, especially when 
a foul mood is on the way, her face is hard to read. If you analyze the discussions, 
you realize she's not the subject, but the guilty party! A fact everyone prefers to 
ignore. Even so, you could call her the instigator. Stirring up trouble, now that's what 
Mrs. van Daan calls fun. Stirring up trouble between Mrs. Frank and Anne. Margot and 
Mr. Frank aren t qwte as easy. 

But let's return to the table. Mrs. van D. may think she doesn't always get enough, 
but that's not the case. The choicest potatoes, the tastiest morsel, the tenderest bit of 
whatever there is, that's Madame's motto. The others can all have their turn, as long 
as I get the best. (Exactly what she accuses Anne Frank of doing.) Her second 
watchword is: keep talking. As long as somebody's listening, it doesn't seem to occur 
to her to wonder whether they're interested. She must think that whatever Mrs. van 
Daan says will interest everyone. 

Smile coquettishly, pretend you know everything, offer everyone a piece of advice and 
mother them — that's sure to make a good impression. But if you take a better look, 
the good impression fades. One, she's hardworking; two, cheerful; three, coquettish — 
and sometimes a cute face. That's Petronella van Daan. 

The third diner. Says very little. Young Mr. van Daan is usually quiet and hardly 
makes his presence known. As far as his appetite is concerned, he's a Danaldean 
vessel that never gets full. Even after the most substantial meal, he can look you 
calmly in the eye and claim he could have eaten twice as much. 

Number four — Margot. Eats like a bird and doesn't talk at all. She eats only 
vegetables and fruit. "Spoiled," in the opinion of the van Daans. "Too little exercise 
and fresh air," in ours. 

Beside her — Mama. Has a hearty appetite, does her share of the talking. No one 
has the impression, as they do with Mrs. van Daan, that this is a housewife. What's 
the difference between the two? Well, Mrs. van D. does the cooking and Mother does 
the dishes and polishes the furniture. 

Numbers six and seven. I won't say much about Father and me. The former is the 
most modest person at the table. He always looks to see whether the others have 
been served first. He needs nothing for himself; the best things are for the children. 
He's goodness personified. Seated next to him is the Annex's little bundle of nerves. 

Dussel. Help yourself, keep your eyes on the food, eat and don't talk. And if you have 
to say something, then for goodness' sake talk about food. That doesn't lead to 
quarrels, just to bragging. He consumes enormous portions, and "no" is not part of his 
vocabulary, whether the food is good or bad. 

Pants that come up to his chest, a red jacket, black patent-leather slippers and 
horn-rimmed glasses — that's how he looks when he's at work at the little table, 
always studying and never progressing. This is interrupted only by his afternoon nap, 
food and — his favorite spot — the bathroom. Three, four or five times a day 
there's bound to be someone waiting outside the bathroom door, hopping impatiently 
from one foot to another, trying to hold it in and barely managing. Does Dussel care? 
Not a whit. From seven— fifteen to seven— thirty, from twelve — thirty to one, from two 
to two — fifteen, from four to four — fifteen, from six to six — fifteen, from eleven — thirty 
to twelve. You can set your watch by them; these are the times for his "regular 
sessions." He never deviates or lets himself be swayed by the voices outside the door, 
begging him to open up before a disaster occurs. 

Number nine is not part of our Annex family, although she does share our house and 
table. Hep has a healthy appetite. She cleans her plate and isn't choosy. Hep's easy to 
please and that pleases us. She can be characterized as follows: cheerful, 

good-humored, kind and willing. 


Dearest Kitty, . 

A new idea: during meals I talk more to myself than to the others, which has two 
advantages. First, they're glad they don't have to listen to my continuous chatter, and 
second, I don't have to get annoyed by their opinions. I don't think my opinions are 
stupid but other people do, so it's better to keep them to myself. I apply the same 
tactic when I have to eat something I loathe. I put the dish in front of me, pretend 
it's delicious, avoid looking at it as much as possible, and it's gone before I've had 
time to realize what it is. When I get up in the morning, another very disagreeable 
moment, I leap out of bed, think to myself, "You'll be slipping back under the covers 
soon," walk to the window, take down the blackout screen, sniff at the crack until I 

feel a bit of fresh air, and I'm awake. I strip the bed as fast as I can so I won't be 
tempted to get back in. Do you know what Mother calls this sort of thing? The art of 
living. Isn't that a funny expression? 

We've all been a little confused this past week because our dearly beloved 
Westertoren bells have been carted off to be melted down for the war, so we have no 
idea of the exact time, either night or day. I still have hopes that they'll come up with 
a substitute, made of tin or copper or some such thing, to remind the neighborhood of 
the clock. 

Everywhere I go, upstairs or down, they all cast admiring glances at my feet, which 
are adorned by a pair of exceptionally beautiful (for times like these!) shoes. Miep 
managed to snap them up for 27.50 guilders. Burgundy-colored suede and leather with 
medium-sized high heels. I feel as if I were on stilts, and look even taller than I 
already am. 

Yesterday was my unlucky day. I pricked my right thumb with the blunt end of a big 
needle. As a result, Margot had to peel potatoes for me (take the good with the bad), 
and writing was awkward. Then I bumped into the cupboard door so hard it nearly 
knocked me over, and was scolded for making such a racket. They wouldn't let me run 
water to bathe my forehead, so now I'm walking around with a giant lump over my 
right eye. To make matters worse, the little toe on my right foot got stuck in the 
vacuum cleaner. It bled and hurt, but my other ailments were already causing me so 
much trouble that I let this one slide, which was stupid of me, because now I'm 
walking around with an infected toe. What with the salve, the gauze and the tape, I 
can't get my heavenly new shoe on my foot. 

Dussel has put us in danger for the umpteenth time. He actually had Miep bring him a 
book, an anti-Mussolini tirade, which has been banned. On the way here she was 
knocked down by an SS motorcycle. She lost her head and shouted "You brutes!" and 
went on her way. I don't dare think what would have happened if she'd been taken 
down to headquarters. 

Yours, Anne 

A Daily Chore in Our Little Community: Peeling Potatoes! 

One person goes to get some newspapers! another, the knives (keeping the best for 
himself, of course); the third, the potatoes; and the fourth, the water. 

Mr. Dussel begins. He may not always peel them very well, but he does peel nonstop, 

glancing left and right to see if everyone is doing it the way he does. No, they're not! 

"Look, Anne, I am taking peeler in my hand like so and going from the top to bottom! 
Nein, not so . . . but so!" 

"I think my way is easier, Mr. Dussel," I say tentatively. 

"But this is best way, Anne. This you can take from me. Of course, it is no matter, 
you do the way you want." 

We go on peeling. I glance at Dussel out of the corner of my eye. Lost in thought, he 
shakes his head (over me, no doubt), but says no more. 

I keep on peeling. Then I look at Father, on the other side of me. To Father, peeling 
potatoes is not a chore, but precision work. When he reads, he has a deep wrinkle in 
the back of his head. But when he's preparing potatoes, beans or vegetables, he seems 
to be totally absorbed in his task. Fie puts on his potato-peeling face, and when it's 
set in that particular way, it would be impossible for him to turn out anything less 
than a perfectly peeled potato. 

I keep on working. I glance up for a second, but that's all the time I need. Mrs. van 
D. is trying to attract Dussel's attention. She starts by looking in his direction, but 
Dussel pretends not to notice. She winks, but Dussel goes on peeling. She laughs, but 
Dussel still doesn't look up. Then Mother laughs too, but Dussel pays them no mind. 
Having failed to achieve her goal, Mrs. van D. is obliged to change tactics. There's a 
brief silence. Then she says, "Putti, why don't you put on an apron? Otherwise, I'll 
have to spend all day tomorrow trying to get the spots out of your suit!" 

"I'm not getting it dirty." 

Another brief silence. "Putti, why don't you sit down?' 

"I'm fine this way. I like standing up!" 


"Putti, look out, du spritzt schon!".* [*Now you're splashing!] 

"I know, Mommy, but I'm being careful." 

Mrs. van D. casts about for another topic. "Tell me, Putti, why aren't the British 

carrying out any bombing raids today?" 

"Because the weather's bad, Kerb!" 

"But yesterday it was such nice weather and they weren't flying then either." 

"Let's drop the subject." 

"Why? Can't a person talk about that or offer an opinion?' 

"Well, why in the world not?" 

"Oh, be quiet, Mammichen!"* [*Mommy] 

"Mr. Frank always answers his wife." 

Mr. van D. is trying to control himself. This remark always rubs him the wrong way, 
but Mrs. van D.'s not one to quit: "Oh, there's never going to be an invasion!" 

Mr. van D. turns white, and when she notices it, Mrs. van D. turns red, but she's not 
about to be deterred: "The British aren't doing a thing!" 

The bomb bursts. "And now shut up, Donnerwetter noch mal!* [*For crying out 

Mother can barely stifle a laugh, and I stare straight ahead. 

Scenes like these are repeated almost daily, unless they've just had a terrible fight. In 
that case, neither Mr. nor Mrs. van D. says a word. 

It's time for me to get some more potatoes. I go up to the attic, where Peter is busy 
picking fleas from the cat. 

He looks up, the cat notices it, and whoosh. . . he's gone. Out the window and into 
the rain gutter. 

Peter swears: I laugh and slip out of the room. 

Freedom in the Annex 

Five-thirty. Bep's arrival signals the beginning of our nightly freedom. Things get 

going right away. I go upstairs with Bep, who usually has her dessert before the rest 

of us. The moment she sits down, Mrs. van D. begins stating her wishes. Her list 

usually starts with "Oh, by the way, Bep, something else I'd like. . ." Bep winks at 
me. Mrs. van D. doesn't miss a chance to make her wishes known to whoever comes 
upstairs. It must be one of the reasons none of them like to go up there. 

Five forty-five. Bep leaves. I go down two floors to have a look around: first to the 
kitchen, then to the private office and then to the coal bin to open the cat door for 

After a long tour of inspection, I wind up in Mr. Kugler's office. Mr. van Daan is 
combing all the drawers and files for today's mail. Peter picks up Boche and the 

warehouse key; Pirn lugs the typewriters upstairs; Margot looks around for a quiet 
place to do her office work; Mrs. van D. puts a kettle of water on the stove; Mother 
comes down the stairs with a pan of potatoes; we all know our jobs. 

Soon Peter comes back from the warehouse. The first question they ask him is 

whether he's remembered the bread. No, he hasn't. He crouches before the door to the 
front office to make himself as small as possible and crawls on his hands and knees to 
the steel cabinet, takes out the bread and starts to leave. At any rate, that's what he 
intends to do, but before he knows what's happened, Mouschi has jumped over him and 
gone to sit under the desk. 

Peter looks all around him. Aha, there's the cat! He crawls back into the office and 
grabs the cat by the tail. Mouschi hisses, Peter sighs. What has he accomplished? 
Mouschi's now sitting by the window licking herself, very pleased at having escaped 
Peter's clutches. Peter has no choice but to lure her with a piece of bread. Mouschi 
takes the bait, follows him out, and the door closes. 

I watch the entire scene through a crack in the door. 

Mr. van Daan is angry and slams the door. Margot and I exchange looks and think the 
same thing: he must have worked himself into a rage again because of some blunder 
on Mr. Kugler's part, and he's forgotten all about the Keg Company next door. 

Another step is heard in the hallway. Dussel comes in, goes toward the window with 
an air of propriety, sniffs. . . coughs, sneezes and clears his throat. He's out of luck 
— it was pepper. He continues on to the front office. The curtains are open, which 
means he can't get at his writing paper. He disappears with a scowl. 

Margot and I exchange another glance. "One less page for his sweetheart tomorrow," I 

hear her say. I nod in agreement. 

An elephant's tread is heard on the stairway. It's Dussel, seeking comfort in his 
favorite spot. 

We continue working. Knock, knock, knock. . . Three taps means dinnertime! 

MONDAY, AUGUST 23, 1943 

Wenn Die Uhr Halb Neune Schlaat ...*[* When the clock strikes half past eight.] 

Margot and Mother are nervous. "Shh . . . Father. Be quiet, Otto. Shh . . . Pirn! It's 
eight -thirty. 

Come here, you can't run the water anymore. Walk softly!" A sample of what's said to 
Father in the bathroom. At the stroke of half past eight, he has to be in the living 

room. No running water, no flushing toilet, no walking around, no noise whatsoever. As 

long as the office staff hasn't arrived, sounds travel more easily to the warehouse. 

The door opens upstairs at eight-twenty, and this is followed by three gentle taps on 

the floor. . . Anne's hot cereal. I clamber up the stairs to get my doggie dish. 

Back downstairs, everything has to be done quickly, quickly: I comb my hair, put away 
the potty, shove the bed back in place. Quiet! The clock is striking eight-thirty! Mrs. 
van D. changes shoes and shuffles through the room in her slippers; Mr. van D. too 
— a veritable Charlie Chaplin. All is quiet. 

The ideal family scene has now reached its high point. I want to read or study and 
Margot does too. Father and Mother ditto. Father is sitting (with Dickens and the 
dictionary, of course) on the edge of the sagging, squeaky bed, which doesn't even 
have a decent mattress. Two bolsters can be piled on top of each other. "I don't need 
these," he thinks. "I can manage without them!" 

Once he starts reading, he doesn't look up. Fie laughs now and then and tries to get 
Mother to read a story. 

"I don't have the time right now!" 

Fie looks disappointed, but then continues to read. 

A little while later, when he comes across another good passage, he tries again: "You 

have to read this, Mother!" 

Mother sits on the folding bed, either reading, sewing, knitting or studying, whichever 
is next on her list. An idea suddenly occurs to her, and she quickly says, so as not to 
forget, "Anne, remember to . . . Margot, jot this down. . . " 

After a while it's quiet again. Margot slams her book shut; Father knits his forehead, 
his eyebrows forming a funny curve and his wrinkle of concentration reappearing I at 
the back of his head, and he buries himself in his book 1 again; Mother starts chatting 
with Margot; and I get curious and listen too. Pirn is drawn into the conversation . . . 
Nine o'clock. Breakfast! 


Dearest Kitty, 

Every time I write to you, something special has happened, usually unpleasant rather 
than pleasant. This time, however, something wonderful is going on. 

On Wednesday, September 8, we were listening to the seven o'clock news when we 
heard an announcement: "Here is some of the best news of the war so far: Italy has 
capitulated." Italy has unconditionally surrendered! The Dutch broadcast from England 
began at eight-fifteen with the news: "Listeners, an hour and fifteen minutes ago, just 
as I finished writing my daily report, we received the wonderful news of Italy's 
capitulation. I tell you, I never tossed my notes into the wastepaper basket with more 
delight than I did today!" 

"God Save the King," the American national anthem and the Russian' 'Internationale" 
were played. As always, the Dutch program was uplifting without being too optimistic. 

The British have landed in Naples. Northern Italy is occupied by the Germans. The 
truce was signed on Friday, September 3, the day the British landed in Italy. The 
Germans are ranting and raving in all the newspapers at the treachery of Badoglio and 
the Italian king. 

Still, there's bad news as well. It's about Mr. Kleiman. As you know, we all like him 
very much. He's unfailingly cheerful and amazingly brave, despite the fact that he's 
always sick and in pain and can't eat much or do a lot of walking. "When Mr. Kleiman 
enters a room, the sun begins to shine," Mother said recently, and she's absolutely 

Now it seems he has to go to the hospital for a very difficult operation on his 
stomach, and will have to stay there for at least four weeks. You should have seen 
him when he told us good-bye. He acted so normally, as though he were just off to 
do an errand. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Relationships here in the Annex are getting worse all the time. We don't dare open 
our mouths at mealtime (except to slip in a bite of food), because no matter what we 
say, someone is bound to resent it or take it the wrong way. Mr. Voskuijl occasionally 
comes to visit us. Unfortunately, he's not doing very well. He isn't making it any 
easier for his family, because his attitude seems to be: what do I care, I'm going to 
die anyway! When I think how touchy everyone is here, I can just imagine what it 
must be like at the Voskuijls'. 

I've been taking valerian every day to fight the anxiety and depression, but it doesn't 
stop me from being even more miserable the next day. A good hearty laugh would 
help better than ten valerian drops, but we've almost forgotten how to laugh. 
Sometimes I'm afraid my face is going to sag with all this sorrow and that my mouth 
is going to permanently droop at the corners. The others aren't doing any better. 
Everyone here is dreading the great terror known as winter. 

Another fact that doesn't exactly brighten up our days is that Mr. van Maaren, the 
man who works in the warehouse, is getting suspicious about the Annex. A person 
with any brains must have noticed by now that Miep sometimes says she's going to 
the lab, Bep to the file room and Mr. Kleiman to the Opekta supplies, while Mr. 
Kugler claims the Annex doesn't belong to this building at all, but to the one next 

We wouldn't care what Mr. van Maaren thought of the situation except that he's 
known to be unreliable and to possess a high degree of curiosity. He's not one who 
can be put off with a flimsy excuse. 

One day Mr. Kugler wanted to be extra cautious, so at twenty past twelve he put on 
his coat and went to the drugstore around the corner. Less than five minutes later he 
was back, and he sneaked up the stairs like a thief to visit us. At one-fifteen he 
started to leave, but Bep met him on the landing and warned him that van Maaren was 

in the office. Mr. Kugler did an about-face and stayed with us until one-thirty. Then 
he took off his shoes and went in his stockinged feet (despite his cold) to the front 
attic and down the other stairway, taking one step at a time to avoid the creaks. It 
took him fifteen minutes to negotiate the stairs, but he wound up safely in the office 
after having entered from the outside. 

In the meantime, Bep had gotten rid of van Maaren and come to get Mr. Kugler from 
the Annex. But he'd already left and at that moment was still tiptoeing down the 
stairs. What must the passersby have thought when they saw the manager putting on 
his shoes outside? Hey, you there, in the socks! 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

It's Mrs. van Daan's birthday. Other than one ration stamp each for cheese, meat and 
bread, all she received from us was a jar of jam. Her husband, Dussel and the office 
staff gave her nothing but flowers and also food. Such are the times we live in! 

Bep had a nervous fit last week because she had so many errands to do. Ten times a 
day people were sending her out for something, each time insisting she go right away 
or go again or that she'd done it all wrong. And when you think that she has her 

regular office work to do, that Mr. Kleiman is sick, that Miep is home with a cold and 

that Bep herself has a sprained ankle, boyfriend troubles and a grouchy father, it's no 
wonder she's at the end of her tether. We comforted her and told her that if she'd put 
her foot down once or twice and say she didn't have the time, the shopping lists 
would shrink of their own accord. 

Saturday there was a big drama, the likes of which have never been seen here before. 
It started with a discussion of van Maaren and ended in a general argument and tears. 
Dussel complained to Mother that he was being treated like a leper, that no one was 
friendly to him and that, after all, he hadn't done anything to deserve it. This was 

followed by a lot of sweet talk, which luckily Mother didn't fall for this time. She told 

him we were disappointed in him and that, on more than one occasion, he'd been a 
source of great annoyance. Dussel promised her the moon, but, as usual, we haven't 
seen so much as a beam. 

There's trouble brewing with the van Daans, I can tell! Father's furious because 
they're cheating us: they've been holding back meat and other things. Oh, what kind of 

bombshell is about to burst now? If only I weren't so involved in all these skirmishes! 
If only I could leave here! They're driving us crazy! 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Mr. Kleiman is back, thank goodness! He looks a bit pale, and yet he cheerfully set 

off to sell some clothes for Mr. van Daan. The disagreeable fact is that Mr. van Daan 

has run out of money. He lost his last hundred guilders in the warehouse, which is 

still creating trouble for us: the men are wondering how a hundred guilders could wind 

up in the warehouse on a Monday morning. Suspicion abounds. Meanwhile, the hundred 
guilders have been stolen. Who's the thief? 

But I was talking about the money shortage. Mrs. van D. has scads of dresses, coats 
and shoes, none of which she feels she can do without. Mr. van D.'s suit is difficult to 
sell, and Peter's bike was put on the block, but is back again, since nobody wanted it. 
But the story doesn't end there. You see, Mrs. van D. is going to have to part with 
her fur coat. In her opinion, the firm should pay for our upkeep, but that's ridiculous. 
They just had a flaming row about it and have entered the "oh, my sweet Putti" and 
"darling Kerli" stage of reconciliation. 

My mind boggles at the profanity this honorable house has had to endure in the past 
month. Father walks around with his lips pressed together, and whenever he hears his 
name, he looks up in alarm, as ifhe's afraid he'll be called upon to resolve another 
delicate problem. Mother's so wrought up her cheeks are blotched with red, Margot 
complains of headaches, Dussel can't sleep, Mrs. van D. frets and fumes all day long, 
and I've gone completely round the bend. To tell you the truth, I sometimes forget 
who we're at odds with and who we're not. The only way to take my mind off it is to 
study, and I've been doing a lot of that lately. 

Yours, Anne 

My dearest Kitty, 

Mr. Kleiman is out again; his stomach won't give him a moment's peace. He doesn't 
even know whether it's stopped bleeding. He came to tell us he wasn't feeling well 

and was going home, and for the first time he seemed really down. 

Mr. and Mrs. van D. have had more raging battles. The reason is simple: they're 
broke. They wanted to sell an overcoat and a suit of Mr. van D. 's, but were unable 
to find any buyers. His prices were way too high. 

Some time ago Mr. Kleiman was talking about a furrier he knows. This gave Mr. van 
D. the idea of selling his wife's fur coat. It's made of rabbit skin, and she's had it for 
seventeen years. Mrs. van D. got 325 guilders for it, an enormous amount. She wanted 
to keep the money herself to buy new clothes after the war, and it took some doing 
before Mr. van D. could make her understand that it was desperately needed to cover 
household expenses. 

You can't imagine the screaming, shouting, stamping of feet and swearing that went on. 
It was terrifying. My family stood holding its breath at the bottom of the stairs, in 
case it might be necessary to drag them apart. All the bickering, tears and nervous 
tension have become such a stress and strain that I fall into my bed at night crying 
and thanking my lucky stars that I have half an hour to myself. 

I'm doing fine, except I've got no appetite. I keep hearing: "Goodness, you look 
awful!" I must admit they're doing their best to keep me in condition: they're plying 
me with dextrose, cod-liver oil, brewer's yeast and calcium. My nerves often get the 
better of me, especially on Sundays: that's when I really feel miserable. The 
atmosphere is stifling, sluggish, leaden. Outside, you don't hear a single bird, and a 
deathly, oppressive silence hangs over the house and clings to me as if it were going 
to drag me into the deepest regions of the underworld. At times like these, Father, 
Mother and Margot don't matter to me in the least. I wander from room to room, 
climb up and down the stairs and feel like a songbird whose wings have been ripped 
off and who keeps hurling itself against the bars of its dark cage. "Let me out, where 
there's fresh air and laughter!" a voice within me cries. I don't even bother to reply 
anymore, but lie down on the divan. Sleep makes the silence and the terrible fear go 
by more quickly, helps pass the time, since it's impossible to kill it. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

To take our minds off matters as well as to develop them, Father ordered a catalog 
from a correspondence school. Margot pored through the thick brochure three times 

without finding anything to her liking and within her budget. Father was easier to 
satisfy and decided to write and ask for a trial lesson in "Elementary Latin." No 
sooner said than done. The lesson arrived, Margot set to work enthusiastically and 
decided to take the course, despite the expense. It's much too hard for me, though I'd 
really like to learn Latin. 

To give me a new project as well, Father asked Mr. Kleiman for a children's Bible so 
I could finally learn something about the New Testament. 

"Are you planning to give Anne a Bible for Hanukkah?" Margot asked, somewhat 

"Yes. . . Well, maybe St. Nicholas Day would be a better occasion," Father replied. 
Jesus and Hanukkah don't exactly go together. 

Since the vacuum cleaner's broken, I have to take an old brush to the rug every night. 
The window's closed, the light's on, the stove's burning, and there I am brushing away 
at the rug. "That's sure to be a problem," I thought to myself the first time. "There're 
bound to be complaints." I was right: Mother got a headache from the thick clouds of 
dust whirling around the room, Margot's new Latin dictionary was caked with dirt, and 
rim grumbled that the floor didn't look any different anyway. Small thanks for my 

We've decided that from now on the stove is going to be lit at seven-thirty on 
Sunday mornings instead of five -thirty. I think it's risky. What will the neighbors 

think of our smoking chimney? 

It's the same with the curtains. Ever since we first went into hiding, they've been 
tacked firmly to the windows. Sometimes one of the ladies or gentlemen can't resist 
the urge to peek outside. The result: a storm of reproaches. The response: "Oh, 
nobody will notice." That's how every act of carelessness begins and ends. No one 
will notice, no one will hear, no one will pay the least bit of attention. Easy to say, 
but is it true? 

At the moment, the tempestuous quarrels have subsided; only Dussel and the van 

Daans are still at loggerheads. When Dussel is talking about Mrs. van D., he invariably 

calls her' 'that old bat" or "that stupid hag," and conversely, Mrs. van D. refers to our 

ever so learned gentleman as an "old maid" or a "touchy neurotic spinster, etc. 

The pot calling the kettle black! 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

If you were to read all my letters in one sitting, you'd be struck by the fact that they 
were written in a variety of moods. It annoys me to be so dependent on the moods 
here in the Annex, but I'm not the only one: we're all subject to them. If I'm 
engrossed in a book, I have to rearrange my thoughts before I can mingle with other 
people, because otherwise they might think I was strange. As you can see, I'm 
currently in the middle of a depression. I couldn't really tell you what set it off, but I 
think it stems from my cowardice, which confronts me at every turn. This evening, 
when Bep was still here, the doorbell rang long and loud. I instantly turned white, my 
stomach churned, and my heart beat wildly — and all because I was afraid. 

At night in bed I see myself alone in a dungeon, without Father and Mother. Or I'm 
roaming the streets, or the Annex is on fire, or they come in the middle of the night 
to take us away and I crawl under my bed in desperation. I see everything as if it 
were actually taking place. And to think it might all happen soon! 

Miep often says she envies us because we have such peace and quiet here. That may 

be true, but she's obviously not thinking about our fear. 

I simply can't imagine the world will ever be normal again for us. I do talk about 
"after the war," but it's as if I were talking about a castle in the air, something that 
can Ii never come true. 

I see the ei ght of us in the Annex as if we were a patch of blue sky surrounded by 
menacing black clouds. The perfectly round spot on which we're standing is still safe, 
but the clouds are moving in on us, and the ring between us and the approaching 
danger is being pulled tighter and tighter. We're surrounded by darkness and danger, 
and in our desperate search for a way out we keep bumping into each other. We look 
at the fighting down below and the peace and beauty up above. In the meantime, 
we've been cut off by the dark mass of clouds, so that we can go neither up nor 
down. It looms before us like an impenetrable wall, trying to crush us, but not yet 

able to. I can only cry out and implore, "Oh, ring, ring, open wide and let us out!" 

Yours, Anne 


Dearest Kitty, 

I have a good title for this chapter: 

Ode to My Fountain Pen 
In Memoriam 

My fountain pen was always one of my most prized possessions; I valued it highly, 
especially because it had a thick nib, and I can only write neatly with thick nibs. It 
has led a long and interesting fountain-pen life, which I will summarize below. 

When I was nine, my fountain pen (packed in cotton) arrived as a "sample of no 
commercial value" all the way from Aachen, where my grandmother (the kindly donor) 
used to live. I lay in bed with the flu, while the February winds howled around the 
apartment house. This splendid fountain pen came in a red leather case, and I showed 
it to my girlfriends the first chance I got. Me, Anne Frank, the proud owner of a 
fountain pen. 

When I was ten, I was allowed to take the pen to school, and to my surprise, the 
teacher even let me write with it. When I was eleven, however, my treasure had to 
be tucked away again, because my sixth-grade teacher allowed us to use only school 
pens and inkpots. When I was twelve, I started at the Jewish Fyceum and my fountain 
pen was given a new case in honor of the occasion. Not only did it have room for a 
pencil, it also had a zipper, which was much more impressive. When I was thirteen, 
the fountain pen went with me to the Annex, and together we've raced through 
countless diaries and compositions. I'd turned fourteen and my fountain pen was 
enjoying the last year of its life with me when . . . 

It was just after five on Friday afternoon. I came out of my room and was about to 
sit down at the table to write when I was roughly pushed to one side to make room 
for Margot and Father, who wanted to practice their Latin. The fountain pen remained 
unused on the table, while its owner, sighing, was forced to make do with a very tiny 
corner of the table, where she began rubbing beans. That's how we remove mold from 
the beans and restore them to their original state. At a quarter to six I swept the 
floor, dumped the dirt into a news paper, along with the rotten beans, and tossed it 
into the stove. A giant flame shot up, and I thought it was wonderful that the stove, 
which had been gasping its last breath, had made such a miraculous recovery. 

All was quiet again. The Latin students had left, and I sat down at the table to pick 

up where I'd left off. But no matter where I looked, my fountain pen was nowhere in 
sight. I took another look. Margot looked, Mother looked, Father looked, Dussel looked. 
But it had vanished. 

"Maybe it fell in the stove, along with the beans!" Margot suggested. 

"No, it couldn't have!" I replied. 

But that evening, when my fountain pen still hadn't turned up, we all assumed it had 
been burned, especially because celluloid is highly inflammable. Our darkest fears were 
confirmed the next day when Father went to empty the stove and discovered the clip, 
used to fasten it to a pocket, among the ashes. Not a trace of the gold nib was left. 
"It must have melted into stone," Father conjectured. 

I'm left with one consolation, small though it may be: my fountain pen was cremated, 
just as I would like to be someday! 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Recent events have the house rocking on its foundations. Owing to an outbreak of 
diphtheria at Bep's, she won't be allowed to come in contact with us for six weeks. 
Without her, the cooking and shopping will be very difficult, not to mention how much 
we'll miss her company. Mr. Kleiman is still in bed and has eaten nothing but gruel 
for three weeks. Mr. Kugler is up to his neck in work. 

Margot sends her Latin lessons to a teacher, who corrects and then returns them. 
She's registered under Bep's name. The teacher's very nice, and witty too. I bet he's 
glad to have such a smart student. 

Dussel is in a turmoil and we don't know why. It all began with Dussel's saying 
nothing when he was upstairs; he didn't exchange so much as a word with either Mr. 
or Mrs. van Daan. We all noticed it. This went on for a few days, and then Mother 
took the opportunity to warn him about Mrs. van D., who could make life miserable 
for him. Dussel said Mr. van Daan had started the silent treatment and he had no 
intention of breaking it. I should explain that yesterday was November 16, the first 
anniversary of his living in the Annex. Mother received a plant in honor of the 
occasion, but Mrs. van Daan, who had alluded to the date for weeks and made no 

bones about the fact that she thought Dussel should treat us to dinner, received 
nothing. Instead of making use of the opportunity to thank us — for the first time 
— for unselfishly taking him in, he didn't utter a word. And on the morning of the 
sixteenth, when I asked him whether I should offer him my congratulations or my 
condolences, he replied that either one would do. Mother, having cast herself in the 
role of peacemaker, made no headway whatsoever, and the situation finally ended in a 

I can say without exaggeration that Dussel has definitely got a screw loose. We often 
laugh to ourselves because he has no memory, no fixed opinions and no common 
sense. He's amused us more than once by trying to pass on the news he's just heard, 
since the message invariably gets garbled in transmission. Furthermore, he answers 
every reproach or accusation with a load of fine 1\ promises, which he never manages 
to keep. 

"Der Mann hat einen grossen Geist 
Una ist so klein van Taten!"* 

[*A well-known expression: 

"The spirit of the man is great, 

How puny are his deeds." 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Last night, just as I was falling asleep, Hanneli suddenly appeared before me. 

I saw her there, dressed in rags, her face thin and worn. She looked at me with such 
sadness and reproach in her enormous eyes that I could read the message in them: 
"Oh, Anne, why have you deserted me? Help me, help me, rescue me from this hell!" 

And I can't help her. I can only stand by and watch while other people suffer and die. 
All I can do is pray to God to bring her back to us. I saw Hanneli, and no one else, 
and I understood why. I misjudged her, wasn't mature enough to understand how 
difficult it was for her. She was devoted to her girlfriend, and it must have seemed as 
though I were trying to take her away. The poor thing, she must have felt awful! I 
know, because I recognize the feeling in myself! I had an occasional flash of 
understanding, but then got selfishly wrapped up again in my own problems and 

It was mean of me to treat her that way, and now she was looking at me, oh so 
helplessly, with her pale face and beseeching eyes. If only I could help her! Dear God, 
I have everything I could wish for, while fate has her in its deadly clutches. She was 
as devout as I am, maybe even more so, and she too wanted to do what was right. 
But then why have I been chosen to live, while she's probably going to die? What's 
the difference between us? Why are we now so far apart? 

To be honest, I hadn't thought of her for months — no, for at least a year. I hadn't 
forgotten her entirely, and yet it wasn't until I saw her before me that I thought of all 
her suffering. 

Oh, Hanneli, I hope that if you live to the end of the war and return to us, I'll be able 
to take you in and make up for the wrong I've done you. 

But even if I were ever in a position to help, she wouldn't need it more than she does 
now. I wonder if she ever thinks of me, and what she's feeling? 

Merciful God, comfort her, so that at least she won't be alone. Oh, if only You could 
tell her I'm thinking of her with compassion and love, it might help her go on. 

I've got to stop dwelling on this. It won't get me anywhere. I keep seeing her 
enormous eyes, and they haunt me. Does Hanneli really and truly believe in God, or 
has religion merely been foisted upon her? I don't even know that. I never took the 
trouble to ask. 

Hanneli, Hanneli, if only I could take you away, if only I could share everything I have 
with you. It's too late. I can't help, or undo the wrong I've done. But I'll never forget 
her again and I'll always pray for her! 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

The closer it got to St. Nicholas Day, the more we all thought back to last year's 
festively decorated basket. 

More than anyone, I thought it would be terrible to skip a celebration this year. After 
long deliberation, I finally came up with an idea, something funny. I consulted rim, and 

a week ago we set to work writing a verse for each person. 

Sunday evening at a quarter to eight we trooped upstairs carrying the big laundry 
basket, which had been decorated with cutouts and bows made of pink and blue carbon 
paper. On top was a large piece of brown wrapping paper with a note attached. 
Everyone was rather amazed at the sheer size of the gift. I removed the note and 
read it aloud: 

"Once again St. Nicholas Day 
Has even come to our hideaway; 

It won't be quite as Jun, I fear, 

As the happy day we had last year. 

Then we were hopeful, no reason to doubt 
That optimism would win the bout, 

And by the time this year came round, 

We'd all be free, and s* and sound. 

Still, let's not Jorget it's St. Nicholas Day, 

Though we've nothing left to give away. 

We'll have to find something else to do: 

So everyone please look in their shoe!" 

As each person took their own shoe out of the basket, there was a roar of laughter. 
Inside each shoe was a little wrapped package addressed to its owner. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

A bad case of flu has prevented me from writing to you until today. Being sick here 
is dreadful. With every cough, I had to duck under the blanket — once, twice, three 
times — and try to keep from coughing anymore. 

Most of the time the tickle refused to go away, so I had to drink milk with honey, 
sugar or cough drops. I get dizzy just thinking about all the cures I've been subjected 
to: sweating out the fever, steam treatment, wet compresses, dry compresses, hot 
drinks, swabbing my throat, lying still, heating pad, hot-water bottles, lemonade and, 
every two hours, the thermometer. Will these remedies really make you better? The 
worst part was when Mr. Dussel decided to play doctor and lay his pomaded head on 
my bare chest to listen to the sounds. Not only did his hair tickle, but I was 
embarrassed, even though he went to school thirty years ago and does have some kind 
of medical degree. Why should he lay his head on my heart? After all, he's not my 

boyfriend! For that matter, he wouldn't be able to tell a healthy sound from an 
unhealthy one. 

He'd have to have his ears cleaned first, since he's becoming alarmingly hard of 
hearing. But enough about my illness. I'm fit as a fiddle again. I've grown almost half 
an inch and gained two pounds. I'm pale, but itching to get back to my books. 

Ausnahmsweise* (the only word that will do here [* By way of exception]), we're all 
getting on well together. No squabbles, though that probably won't last long. There 
hasn't been such peace and quiet in this house for at least six months. 

Bep is still in isolation, but any day now her sister will no longer be contagious. 

For Christmas, we're getting extra cooking oil, candy and molasses. For Hanukkah, Mr. 
Dussel gave Mrs. van Daan and Mother a beautiful cake, which he'd asked Miep to 
bake. On top of all the work she has to do! Margot and I received a brooch made out 
of a penny, all bright and shiny. I can't really describe it, but it's lovely. 

I also have a Christmas present for Miep and Bep. For a whole month I've saved up 
the sugar I put on my hot cereal, and Mr. Kleiman has used it to have fondant made. 

The weather is drizzly and overcast, the stove stinks, and the food lies heavily on our 
stomachs, producing a variety of rumbles. 

The war is at an impasse, spirits are low. 

Yours, Anne 

Dear Kitty, 

As I've written you many times before, moods have a tendency to affect us quite a 
bit here, and in my case it's been getting worse lately. "Himmelhoch jauchzend, zu 
Tode betru'bt"* [* A famous line from Goethe: "On top of the world, or in the depths 
of despair."] certainly applies to me. I'm "on top of the world" when I think of how 
fortunate we are and compare myself to other Jewish children, and "in the depths of 
despair" when, for example, Mrs. Kleiman comes by and talks about Jopie's hockey 
club, canoe trips, school plays and afternoon teas with friends. 

I don't think I'm jealous of Jopie, but I long to have a really good time for once and 

to laugh so hard it hurts. 

We're stuck in this house like lepers, especially during winter and the Christmas and 
New Year's holidays. Actually, I shouldn't even be writing this, since it makes me 
seem so ungrateful, but I can't keep everything to myself, so I'll repeat what I said at 
the beginning: "Paper is more patient than people." 

Whenever someone comes in from outside, with the wind in their clothes and the cold 
on their cheeks, I feel like burying my head under the blankets to keep from thinking, 
"When will we be allowed to breathe fresh air again?" I can't do that — on the 
contrary, I have to hold my head up high and put a bold face on things, but the 
thoughts keep coming anyway. Not just once, but over and over. 

Believe me, if you've been shut up for a year and a half, it can get to be too much 

for you sometimes. But feelings can't be ignored, no matter how unjust or ungrateful 

they seem. I long to ride a bike, dance, whistle, look at the world, feel young and 
know that I'm free, and yet I can't let it show, just imagine what would happen if all 
eight of us were to feel sorry for ourselves or walk around with the discontent clearly 
visible on our faces. Where would that get us? I sometimes wonder if anyone will 
ever understand what I mean, if anyone will ever overlook my ingratitude and not 
worry about whether or not I'm Jewish and merely see me as a teenager badly in 
need of some good plain fun. I don't know, and I wouldn't be able to talk about it with 

anyone, since I'm sure I'd start to cry. Crying can bring relief, as long as you don't 

cry alone. Despite all my theories and efforts, I miss — every day and every hour of 
the day — having a mother who understands me. That's why with everything I do 
and write, I imagine the kind of mom I'd like to be to my children later on. The kind 
of mom who doesn't take everything people say too seriously, but who does take me 
seriously. I find it difficult to describe what I mean, but the word' 'mom" says it all. 
Do you know what I've come up with? In order to give me the feeling of calling my 
mother something that sounds like "Mom," I often call her" Momsy." Sometimes I 
shorten it to "Moms": an imperfect "Mom." I wish I could honor her by removing the 
"s." It's a good thing she doesn't realize this, since it would only make her unhappy. 

Well, that's enough of that. My writing has raised me somewhat from "the depths of 

Yours, Anne 

It's the day after Christmas, and I can't help thinking about Pirn and the story he told 
me this time last year. I didn't understand the meaning of his words then as well as I 
do now. If only he'd bring it up again, I might be able to show him I understood what 

he meant! 

I think Pim told me because he, who knows the "intimate secrets" of so many others, 
needed to express his own feelings for once! Pim never talks about himself, and I 
don't think Margot has any inkling of what he's been through. Poor Pim, he can't fool 
me into thinking he's forgotten that girl. He never will. It's made him very 
accommodating, since he's not blind to Mother's faults. I hope I'm going to be a little 
like him, without having to go through what he has! 



Friday evening, for the first time in my life, I received a Christmas present. Mr. 
Kleiman, Mr. Kugler and the girls had prepared a wonderful surprise for us. Miep 
made a delicious Christmas cake with "Peace 1944" written on top, and Bep provided a 
batch of cookies that was up to prewar standards. 

There was a jar of yogurt for Peter, Margot and me, and a bottle of beer for each of 
the adults. And once again everything was wrapped so nicely, with pretty pictures 
glued to the packages. For the rest, the holidays passed by quickly for us. 



I was very sad again last night. Grandma and Hanneli came to me once more. 
Grandma, oh, my sweet Grandma. How little we understood what she suffered, how 
kind she always was and what an interest she took in everything that concerned us. 
And to think that all that time she was carefully guarding her terrible secret. * 
[*Anne's grandmother was terminally ill.] 

Grandma was always so loyal and good. She would never have let any of us down. 
Whatever happened, no matter how much I misbehaved, Grandma always stuck up for 
me. Grandma, did you love me, or did you not understand me either? I don't know. 
How lonely Grandma must have been, in spite of us. You can be lonely even when 
you're loved by many people, since you're still not bd'"dl" any 0 y s one an only. 

And Hanneli? Is she still alive? What's she doing? Dear God, watch over her and bring 
her back to us. Hanneli, you're a reminder of what my fate might have been. I keep 
seeing myself in your place. So why am I often miserable about what goes on here? 

Shouldn't I be happy, contented and glad, except when I'm thinking of Hanneli and 
those suffering along with her? I'm selfish and cowardly. Why do I always think and 
dream the most awful things and want to scream in terror? Because, in spite of 
everything, I still don't have enough faith in God. He's given me so much, which I 
don't deserve, and yet each day I make so many mistakes! 

Thinking about the suffering of those you hold dear can reduce you to tears! in fact, 
you could spend the whole day crying. The most you can do is pray for God to 
perform a miracle and save at least some of them. And I hope I'm doing enough of 


Dearest Kitty, 

Since the last raging quarrels, things have settled down here, not only between 
ourselves, Dussel and "upstairs," but also between Mr. and Mrs. van D. Nevertheless, 
a few dark thunderclouds are heading this way, and all because of . . . food. Mrs. van 
D. came up with the ridiculous idea of frying fewer potatoes in the morning and saving 
them for later in the day. Mother and Dussel and the rest of us didn't agree with her, 
so now we're dividing up the potatoes as well. It seems the fats and oils aren't being 
doled out fairly, and Mother's going to have to put a stop to it. I'll let you know if 
there are any interesting developments. For the last few months now we've been 
splitting up the meat (theirs with fat, ours without), the soup (they eat it, we don't), 
the potatoes (theirs peeled, ours not), the extras and now the fried potatoes too. 

If only we could split up completely! 

Yours, Anne 

P.S. Bep had a picture postcard of the entire Royal Family copied for me. Juliana 
looks very young, and so does the Queen. The three little girls are adorable. It was 
incredibly nice of Bep, don't you think? 


Dearest Kitty, 

This morning, when I had nothing to do, I leafed through the pages of my diary and 

came across so many letters dealing with the subject of "Mother" in such strong terms 
that I was shocked. I said to myself, "Anne, is that really you talking about hate? Oh, 
Anne, how could you?" 

I continued to sit with the open book in my hand and wonder why I was filled with so 
much anger and hate that I had to confide it all to you. I tried to understand the Anne 
of last year and make apologies for her, because as long as I leave you with these 
accusations and don't attempt to explain what prompted them, my conscience won't be 
clear. I was suffering then (and still do) from moods that kept my head under water 
(figuratively speaking) and allowed me to see things only from my own perspective, 
without calmly considering what the others — those whom I, with my mercurial 
temperament, had hurt or offended — had said, and then acting as they would have 

I hid inside myself, thought of no one but myself and calmly wrote down all my joy, 
sarcasm and sorrow in my diary. Because this diary has become a kind of memory 

book, it means a great deal to me, but I could easily write "over and done with" on 

many of its pages. 

I was furious at Mother (and still am a lot of the time). It's true, she didn't 
understand me, but I didn't understand her either. Because she loved me, she was 
tender and affectionate, but because of the difficult situations I put her in, and the sad 

circumstances in which she found herself, she was nervous and irritable, so I can 

understand why she was often short with me. 

I was offended, took it far too much to heart and was insolent and beastly to her, 
which, in turn, made her unhappy. We were caught in a vicious circle of 
unpleasantness and sorrow. Not a very happy period for either of us, but at least it's 
coming to an end. I didn't want to see what was going on, and I felt very sorry for 
myself, but that's understandable too. 

Those violent outbursts on paper are simply expressions of anger that, in normal life, 
I could have worked off by locking myself in my room and stamping my foot a few 
times or calling Mother names behind her back. 

The period of tearfully passing judgment on Mother is over. I've grown wiser and 
Mother's nerves are a bit steadier. Most of the time I manage to hold my tongue 
when I'm annoyed, and she does too; so on the surface, we seem to be getting along 
better. But there's one thing I can't do, and that's to love Mother with the devotion of 
a child. 

I soothe my conscience with the thought that it's better for unkind words to be down 
on paper than for Mother to have to carry them around in her heart. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Today I have two things to confess. It's going to take a long time, but I have to tell 
them to someone, and you're the most likely candidate, since I know you'll keep a 
secret, no matter what happens. 

The first is about Mother. As you know, I've frequently complained about her and then 
tried my best to be nice. I've suddenly realized what's wrong with her. Mother has 
said that she sees us more as friends than as daughters. That's all very nice, of 
course, except that a friend can't take the place of a mother. I need my mother to set 
a good example and be a person I can respect, but in most matters she's an example 
of what not to do. I have the feeling that Margot thinks so differently about these 
things that she'd never be able to understand what I've just told you. And Father 
avoids all conversations having to do with Mother. 

I imagine a mother as a woman who, first and foremost, possesses a great deal of 
tact, especially toward her adolescent children, and not one who, like Momsy, pokes 
fun at me when I cry. Not because I'm in pain, but because of other things. 

This may seem trivial, but there's one incident I've never forgiven her for. It happened 
one day when I had to go to the dentist. Mother and Margot planned to go with me 
and agreed I should take my bicycle. When the dentist was finished and we were back 
outside, Margot and Mother very sweetly informed me that they were going downtown 
to buy or look at something, I don't remember what, and of course I wanted to go 
along. But they said I couldn't come because I had my bike with me. Tears of rage 
rushed to my eyes, and Margot and Mother began laughing at me. I was so furious 
that I stuck my tongue out at them, right there on the street. A little old lady 
happened to be passing by, and she looked terribly shocked. I rode my bike home and 
must have cried for hours. Strangely enough, even though Mother has wounded me 
thousands of times, this particular wound still stings whenever I think of how angry I 

I find it difficult to confess the second one because it's about myself. I'm not prudish, 
Kitty, and yet every time they give a blow-by-blow account of their trips to the 

bathroom, which they often do, my whole body rises in revolt. 

Yesterday I read an article on blushing by Sis Heyster. It was as if she'd addressed it 
directly to me. Not that I blush easily, but the rest of the article did apply. What she 
basically says is that during puberty girls withdraw into themselves and begin thinking 
about the wondrous changes taking place in their bodies. I feel that too, which 
probably accounts for my recent embarrassment over Margot, Mother and Father. On 
the other hand, Margot is a lot shyer than I am, and yet she's not in the least 

I think that what's happening to me is so wonderful, and I don't just mean the changes 
taking place on the outside of my body, but also those on the inside. I never discuss 
myself or any of these things with others, which is why I have to talk about them to 
myself. Whenever I get my period (and that's only been three times), I have the 
feeling that in spite of all the pain, discomfort and mess, I'm carrying around a sweet 
secret. So even though it's a nuisance, in a certain way I'm always looking forward to 
the time when I'll feel that secret inside me once again. 

Sis Heyster also writes that girls my age feel very insecure about themselves and are 
just beginning to discover that they're individuals with their own ideas, thoughts and 
habits. I'd just turned thirteen when I came here, so I started thinking about myself 
and realized that I've become an "independent person" sooner than most girls. 
Sometimes when I lie in bed at night I feel a terrible urge to touch my breasts and 
listen to the quiet, steady beating of my heart. 

Unconsciously, I had these feelings even before I came here. Once when I was 
spending the night at Jacque's, I could no longer restrain my curiosity about her body, 
which she'd always hidden from me and which I'd never seen. I asked her whether, as 
proof of our friendiship, we could touch each other's breasts. Jacque refused. 

I also had a terrible desire to kiss her, which I did. Every time I see a female nude, 
such as the Venus in my art history book, I go into ecstasy. Sometimes I find them 
so exquisite I have to struggle to hold back my tears. If only I had a girlfriend! 


Dearest Kitty, 

My longing for someone to talk to has become so unbearable that I somehow took it 
into my head to select Peter for this role. On the few occasions when I have gone to 
Peter's room during the day, I've always thought it was nice and cozy. But Peter's too 

polite to show someone the door when they're bothering him, so I've never dared to 
stay long. I've always been afraid he'd think I was a pest. I've been looking for an 
excuse to linger in his room and get him talking without his noticing, and yesterday I 
got my chance. Peter, you see, is currently going through a crossword-puzzle craze, 
and he doesn't do anything else all day. I was helping him, and we soon wound up 
sitting across from each other at his table, Peter on the chair and me on the divan. 

It gave me a wonderful feeling when I looked into his dark blue eyes and saw how 
bashful my unexpected visit had made him. I could read his innermost thoughts, and in 
his face I saw a look of helplessness and uncertainty as to how to behave, and at the 
same time a flicker of awareness of his masculinity. I saw his shyness, and I melted. 
I wanted to say, "Tell me about yourself. Look beneath my chatty exterior." But I 
found that it was easier to think up questions than to ask them. 

The evening came to a close, and nothing happened, except that I told him about the 
article on blushing. Not what I wrote you, of course, just that he would grow more 
secure as he got older. " 

That night I lay in bed and cried my eyes out, all the i while making sure no one 
could hear me. The idea that I had to beg Peter for favors was simply revolting. But 
people will do almost anything to satisfy their longings; take me, for example, I've 
made up my mind to visit Peter more often and, somehow, get him to talk to me. 

You mustn't think I'm in love with Peter, because I'm not. If the van Daans had had a 
daughter instead of a son, I'd have tried to make friends with her. 

This morning I woke up just before seven and immediately remembered what I'd been 
dreaming about. I was sitting on a chair and across from me was Peter. . . Peter 

Schiff. We were looking at a book of drawings by Mary Bos. The dream was so vivid 

I can even remember some of the drawings. But that wasn't all — the dream went 

on. Peter's eyes suddenly met mine, and I stared for a long time into those velvety 

brown eyes. Then he said very softly, "If I'd only known, I'd have come to you long 
ago!" I turned abruptly away, overcome by emotion. And then I felt a soft, 

oh-so-cool and gentle cheek against mine, and it felt so good, so good . . . 

At that point I woke up, still feeling his cheek against mine and his brown eyes 

staring deep into my heart, so deep that he could read how much I'd loved him and 

how much I still do. Again my eyes filled with tears, and I was sad because I'd lost 

him once more, and yet at the same time glad because I knew with certainty that 
Peter is still the only one for me. ' 

It's funny, but I often have such vivid images in my dreams. One night I saw 
Grammy* [*Grammy is Anne's grandmother on her father's side, and Grandma her 
grandmother on her mother's side.] so clearly that I could even make out her skin of 
soft, crinkly velvet. Another time Grandma appeared to me as a guardian angel. After 
that it was Hanneli, who still symbolizes to me the suffering of my friends as well as 
that of Jews in general, so that when I'm praying for her, I'm also praying for all the 
Jews and all those in need. 

And now Peter, my dearest Peter. I've never had such a clear mental image of him. I 
don't need a photograph, I can see him oh so well. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

I'm such an idiot. I forgot that I haven't yet told you the story of my one true love. 

When I was a little girl, way back in kindergarten, I took a liking to Sally Kimmel. 
His father was gone, and he and his mother lived with an aunt. One of Sally's cousins 
was a good-looking, slender, dark-haired boy named Appy, who later turned out to 
look like a movie idol and aroused more admiration than the short, comical, chubby 
Sally. For a long time we went everywhere together, but aside from that, my love was 
unrequited until Peter crossed my path. I had an out-and-out crush on him. He liked 
me too, and we were inseparable for one whole summer. I can still see us walking 
hand in hand through our neighborhood, Peter in a white cotton suit and me in a short 
summer dress. At the end of the summer vacation he went to the seventh grade at 
the middle school, while I was in the sixth grade at the grammar school. He'd pick me 
up on the way home, or I'd pick him up. Peter was the ideal boy: tall, good-looking 
and slender, with a serious, quiet and intelligent face. He had dark hair, beautiful 
brown eyes, ruddy cheeks and a nicely pointed nose. I was crazy about his smile, 
which made him look so boyish and mischievous. 

I'd gone away to the countryside during summer vacation, and when I came back, 
Peter was no longer at his old address; he'd moved and was living with a much older 
boy, who apparently told him I was just a kid, because Peter stopped seeing me. I 
loved him so much that I didn't want to face the truth. I kept clinging to him until the 
day I finally realized that if I continued to chase after him, people would say I was 

The years went by. Peter hung around with girls his own age and no longer bothered 
to say hello to me. I started school at the Jewish Lyceum, and several boys in my 
class were in love with me. I enjoyed it and felt honored by their attentions, but that 
was all. Later on, Hello had a terrible crush on me, but as I've already told you, I 
never fell in love again. 

There's a saying: "Time heals all wounds." That's how it was with me. I told myself 
I'd forgotten Peter and no longer liked him in the least. But my memories of him were 
so strong that I had to admit to myself that the only reason I no longer liked him was 
that I was jealous of the other girls. This morning I realized that nothing has changed; 
on the contrary, as I've grown older and more mature, my love has grown along with 
me. I can understand now that Peter thought I was childish, and yet it still hurts to 
think he'd forgotten me completely. I saw his face so clearly; I knew for certain that 
no one but Peter could have stuck in my mind that way. 

I've been in an utter state of confusion today. When Father kissed me this morning, I 
wanted to shout, "Oh, if only you were Peter!" I've been thinking of him constantly, 
and all day long I've been repeating to myself, "Oh, Petel, my darling, darling Petel . . 

Where can I find help? I simply have to go on living and praying to God that, if we 
ever get out of here, Peter's path will cross mine and he'll gaze into my eyes, read 
the love in them and say, "Oh, Anne, if I'd only known, I'd have come to you long 

Once when Father and I were talking about sex, he said I was too young to 
understand that kind of desire. But I thought I did understand it, and now I'm sure I 
do. Nothing is as dear to me now as my darling Petel! 

I saw my face in the mirror, and it looked so different. My eyes were clear and deep, 
my cheeks were rosy, which they hadn't been in weeks, my mouth was much softer. I 
looked happy, and yet there was something so sad in my expression that the smile 
immediately faded from my lips. I'm not happy, since I know Petel's not thinking of 
me, and yet I can still feel his beautiful eyes gazing at me and his cool, soft cheek 
against mine. . . Oh, Petel, Petel, how am I ever going to free myself from your 
image? Wouldn't anyone who took your place be a poor substitute? I love you, with a 
love so great that it simply couldn't keep growing inside my heart, but had to leap out 
and reveal itself in all its magnitude. 

A week ago, even a day ago, if you'd asked me, "Which of your friends do you think 
you'd be most likely to marry?" I'd have answered, "Sally, since he makes me feel 

good, peaceful and safe!" But now I'd cry, "Petel, because I love him with all my 
heart and all my soul. I surrender myself completely!" Except for that one thing: he 
may touch my face, but that's as far as it goes. 

This morning I imagined I was in the front attic with Petel, sitting on the floor by the 
windows, and after talking for a while, we both began to cry. Moments later I felt his 
mouth and his wonderful cheek! Oh, Petel, come to me. Think of me, my dearest 

Dearest Kitty, 

Bep's been back for the last two weeks, though her sister won't be allowed back at 
school until next week. Bep herself spent two days in bed with a bad cold. Miep and 
Jan were also out for two days, with upset stomachs. 

I'm currently going through a dance and ballet craze and am diligently practicing my 
dance steps every evening. I've made an ultramodern dance costume out of a lacy 
lavender slip belonging to Momsy. Bias tape is threaded through the top and tied just 
above the bust. A pink corded ribbon completes the ensemble. I tried to turn my 
tennis shoes into ballet slippers, but with no success. My stiff limbs are well on the 
way to becoming as limber as they used to be. A terrific exercise is to sit on the 
floor, place a heel in each hand and raise both legs in the air. I have to sit on a 
cushion, because otherwise my poor backside really takes a beating. 

Everyone here is reading a book called A Cloudless Morning. Mother thought it was 
extremely good because it describes a number of adolescent problems. I thought to 
myself, a bit ironically, "Why don't you take more interest in your own adolescents 

I think Mother believes that Margot and I have a better relationship with our parents 
than anyone in the whole wide world, and that no mother is more involved in the lives 
of her children than she is. She must have my sister in mind, since I don't believe 
Margot has the same problems and thoughts as I do. Far be it from me to point out 
to Mother that one of her daughters is not at all what she imagines. She'd be 
completely bewildered, and anyway, she'd never be able to change; I'd like to spare 
her that grief, especially since I know that everything would remain the same. Mother 
does sense that Margot loves her much more than I do, but she thinks I'm just going 
through a phase. 

Margot's gotten much nicer. She seems a lot different than she used to be. She's not 

nearly as catty these days and is becoming a real friend. She no longer thinks of me 

as a litde kid who doesn't count. 

It's funny, but I can sometimes see myself as others see me. I take a leisurely look 
at the person called "Anne Frank" and browse through the pages of her life as though 
she were a stranger. 

Before I came here, when I didn't think about things as much as I do now, I 
occasionally had the feeling that I didn't belong to Momsy, Pirn and Margot and that I 
would always be an outsider. I sometimes went around for six months at a time 
pretending I was an orphan. Then I'd chastise myself for playing the victim, when 
really, I'd always been so fortunate. After that I'd force myself to be friendly for a 
while. Every morning when I heard footsteps on the stairs, I hoped it would be 
Mother coming to say good morning. I'd greet her warmly, because I honesly did look 

forward to her affectionate glance. But then she'd snap at me for having made some 

comment or other (and I'd go off to school feeling completely discouraged. 

On the way home I'd make excuses for her, telling myself that she had so many 
worries. I'd arrive home in high spirits, chatting nineteen to the dozen, until the events 
of the morning would repeat themselves and I'd leave the room with my schoolbag in 
my hand and a pensive look on my face. Sometimes I'd decide to stay angry, but then 
I always had so much to talk about after school that I'd forget my resolution and want 
Mother to stop whatever she was doing and lend a willing ear. Then the time would 
come once more when I no longer listened for the steps on the stairs and felt lonely 
and cried into my pillow every night. 

Everything has gotten much worse here. But you already knew that. Now God has sent 
someone to help me: Peter. I fondle my pendant, press it to my lips and think, "What 
do I care! Petel is mine and nobody knows it!" With this in mind, I can rise above 
every nasty remark. Which of the people here would suspect that so much is going on 
in the mind of a teenage girl? 


My dearest Kitty, 

There's no reason for me to go on describing all our quarrels and arguments down to 
the last detail. It's enough to tell you that we've divided many things like meat and 
fats and oils and are frying our own potatoes. Recently we've been eating a little 
extra rye bread because by four o'clock we're so hungry for dinner we can barely 

control our rumbling stomachs. 

Mother's birthday is rapidly approaching. She received some extra sugar from Mr. 
Kugler, which sparked off jealousy on the part of the van Daans, because Mrs. van D. 
didn't receive any on her birthday. But what's the point of boring you with harsh 
words, spiteful conversations and tears when you know they bore us even more? 

Mother has expressed a wish, which isn't likely to come true any time soon: not to 
have to see Mr. van Daan's face for two whole weeks. I wonder if everyone who 
shares a house sooner or later ends up at odds with their fellow residents. Or have 
we just had a stroke of bad luck? At mealtime, when Dussel helps himself to a 
quarter of the half-filled gravy boat and leaves the rest of us to do without, I lose 
my appetite and feel like jumping to my feet, knocking him off his chair and throwing 
him out the door. 

Are most people so stingy and selfish? I've gained some insight into human nature 
since I came here, which is good, but I've had enough for the present. Peter says the 

The war is going to go on despite our quarrels and our longing for freedom and fresh 
air, so we should try to make the best of our stay here. 

I'm preaching, but I also believe that if I live here much longer, I'll turn into a 
dried-up old beanstalk. And all I really want is to be an honest-to-goodness 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

I (there I go again!) don't know what's happened, but since my dream I keep noticing 
how I've changed. By the way, I dreamed about Peter again last night and once again I 
felt his eyes penetrate mine, but this dream was less vivid and not quite as beautiful 
as the last. 

You know that I always used to be jealous of Margot's relationship with Father. 
There's not a trace of my jealousy left now; I still feel hurt when Father's nerves 
cause him to be unreasonable toward me, but then I think, "I can't blame you for 
being the way you are. You talk so much about the minds of children and adolescents, 

but you don't know the first thing about them!" I long for more than Father's 
affection, more than his hugs and kisses. Isn't it awful of me to be so preoccupied 
with myself? Shouldn't I, who want to be good and kind, forgive them first? I forgive 
Mother too, but every time she makes a sarcastic remark or laughs at me, it's all I 
can do to control myself. 

I know I'm far from being what I should; will I ever be? 

Anne Frank 

P.S. Father asked if I told you about the cake. For Mother's birthday, she received a 
real mocha cake, prewar quality, from the office. It was a really nice day! But at the 
moment there's no room in my head for things like that. 


Dearest Kitty, 

Can you tell me why people go to such lengths to hide their real selves? Or why I 
always behave very differently when I'm in the company of others? Why do people 
have so little trust in one another? I know there must be a reason, but sometimes I 
think it's horrible that you can't ever confide in anyone, not even those closest to you. 

It seems as if I've grown up since the night I had that dream, as if I've become more 
independent. You'll be amazed when I tell you that even my attitude toward the van 
Daans has changed. I've stopped looking at all the discussions and arguments from my 
family's biased point of view. What's brought on such a radical change? Well, you see, 
I suddenly realized that if Mother had been different, if she'd been a real mom, our 
relationship would have been very, very different. Mrs. van Daan is by no means a 
wonderful person, yet half the arguments could have been avoided if Mother hadn't 
been so hard to deal with every time they got onto a tricky subject. Mrs. van Daan 
does have one good point, though: you can talk to her. She may be selfish, stingy and 
underhanded, but she'll readily back down as long as you don't provoke her and make 
her unreasonable. This tactic doesn't work every time, but if you're patient, you can 
keep trying and see how far you get. 

All the conflicts about our upbringing, about not pampering children, about the food 
— about everything, absolutely everything — might have taken a different turn if 
we'd remained open and on friendly terms instead of always seeing the worst side. 

I know exactly what you're going to say, Kitty. 

"But, Anne, are these words really coming from your lips? From you, who have had to 
put up with so many unkind words from upstairs? From you, who are aware of all the 

And yet they are coming from me. I want to take a fresh look at things and form my 

own opinion, not just ape my parents, as in the proverb "The apple never falls far 

from the tree." I want to reexamine the van Daans and decide for myself what's true 
and what's been blown out of proportion. If I wind up being disappointed in them, I 
can always side with Father and Mother. But if not, I can try to change their attitude. 
And if that doesn't work, I'll have to stick with my own opinions and judgment. I'll 
take every opportunity to speak openly to Mrs. van D. about our many differences and 
not be afraid — despite my reputation as a smart aleck — to offer my impartial 
opinion. I won't say anything negative about my own family, though that doesn't mean 
I won't defend them if somebody else does, and as of today, my gossiping is a thing 
of the past. 

Up to now I was absolutely convinced that the van Daans were entirely to blame for 

the quarrels, but now I'm sure the fault was largely ours. We were right as far as the 

subject matter was concerned, but intelligent people (such as ourselves!) should have 
more insight into how to deal with others. 

I hope I've got at least a touch of that insight, and that I'll find an occasion to put it 
to good use. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

A very strange thing has happened to me. (Actually, "happened" isn't quite the right 

Before I came here, whenever anyone at home or at school talked about sex, they 
were either secretive or disgusting. Any words having to do with sex were spoken in 
a low whisper, and kids who weren't in the know were often laughed at. That struck 
me as odd, and I often wondered why people were so mysterious or obnoxious when 
they talked about this subject. But because I couldn't change things, I said as little as 
possible or asked my girlfriends for information. 

After I'd learned quite a lot, Mother once said to me, "Anne, let me give you some 
good advice. Never discuss this with boys, and if they bring it up, don't answer them." 

I still remember my exact reply. "No, of course not," I exclaimed. "Imagine!" And 
nothing more was said. 

When we first went into hiding, Father often told me about things I'd rather have 
heard from Mother, and I learned the rest from books or things I picked up in 

Peter van Daan wasn't ever as obnoxious about this subject as the boys at school. Or 
maybe just once or twice, in the beginning, though he wasn't trying to get me to talk. 
Mrs. van Daan once told us she'd never discussed these matters with Peter, and as far 
as she knew, neither had her husband. Apparently she didn't even know how much 
Peter knew or where he got his information. 

Yesterday, when Margot, Peter and I were peeling potatoes, the conversation somehow 
turned to Boche. "We're still not sure whether Boche is a boy or a girl, are we?" I 

Yes we are, he answered. "Boche is a tomcat." 

I began to laugh. "Some tomcat if he's pregnant." 

Peter and Margot joined in the laughter. You see, a month or two ago Peter informed 
us that Boche was sure to have kittens before long, because her stomach was rapidly 
swelling. However, Boche's fat tummy turned out to be due to a bunch of stolen 
bones. No kittens were growing inside, much less about to be born. 

Peter felt called upon to defend himself against my accusation. "Come with me. You 
can see for yourself. I was horsing around with the cat one day, and I could definitely 
see it was a 'he.' " 

Unable to restrain my curiosity, I went with him to the warehouse. Boche, however, 
wasn't receiving visitors at that hour, and was nowhere in sight. We waited for a 
while, but when it got cold, we went back upstairs. 

Later that afternoon I heard Peter go downstairs for the second time. I mustered the 
courage to walk through the silent house by myself and reached the warehouse. Boche 
was on the packing table, playing with Peter, who was getting ready to put him on the 
scale and weigh him. 

"Hi, do you want to have a look?" Without any preliminaries, he picked up the cat, 
turned him over on his back, deftly held his head and paws and began the lesson. 
"This is the male sexual organ, these are a few stray hairs, and that's his backside." 

The cat flipped himself over and stood up on his little white feet. 

If any other boy had pointed out the "male sexual organ" to me, I would never have 
given him a second glance. But Peter went on talking in a normal voice about what is 
otherwise a very awkward subject. Nor did he have any ulterior motives. By the time 
he'd finished, I felt so much at ease that I started acting normally too. We played 
with Boche, had a good time, chatted a bit and finally sauntered through the long 
warehouse to the door. "Were you there when Mouschi was fixed?" 

"Yeah, sure. It doesn't take long. They give the cat an anesthetic, of course." 

"Do they take something out?" 

"No, the vet just snips the tube. There's nothing to see on the outside." 

I had to get up my nerve to ask a question, since it wasn't as "normal" as I thought. 
"Peter, the German word Geschlechtsteil means 'sexual organ,' doesn't it? But then the 
male and female ones have different names." 

"I know that." 

"The female one is a vagina, that I know, but I don't know what it's called in males." 

"Oh well," I said. "How are we supposed to know these words? Most of the time you 
just come across them by accident." 

"Why wait? I'll ask my parents. They know more than I do and they've had more 

We were already on the stairs, so nothing more was said. 

Yes, it really did happen. I'd never have talked to a girl about this in such a normal 
tone of voice. I'm also certain that this isn't what Mother meant when she warned me 
about boys. 

All the same, I wasn't exactly my usual self for the rest of the day. When I thought 

back to our talk, it struck me as odd. But I've learned at least one thing: there are 
young people, even those of the opposite sex, who can discuss these things naturally, 
without cracking jokes. 

Is Peter really going to ask his parents a lot of questions? Is he really the way he 
seemed yesterday? 

Oh, what do I know?!!! 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

In recent weeks I've developed a great liking for family trees and the genealogical 
tables of royal families. I've come to the conclusion that once you begin your search, 
you have to keep digging deeper and deeper into the past, which leads you to even 
more interesting discoveries. 

Although I'm extremely diligent when it comes to my schoolwork and can pretty much 
follow the BBC Home Service on the radio, I still spend many of my Sundays sorting 
out and looking over my movie -star collection, which has grown to a very respectable 
size. Mr. Kugler makes me happy every Monday by bringing me a copy of Cinema & 
Theater magazine. The less worldly members of our household often refer to this 
small indulgence as a waste of money, yet they never fail to be surprised at how 
accurately I can list the actors in any given movie, even after a year. Bep, who often 
goes to the movies with her boyfriend on her day off, tells me on 

Saturday the name of the show they're going to see, and I then proceed to rattle off 
the names of the leading actors and actresses and the reviews. Moms recently 
remarked ; that I wouldn't need to go to the movies later on, because ! 

I know all the plots, the names of the stars and the reviews by heart. 

Whenever I come sailing in with a new hairstyle, I I can read the disapproval on their 
faces, and I can be sure someone will ask which movie star I'm trying to imitate. My 
reply, that it's my own invention, is greeted with ~ skepticism. As for the hairdo, it 
doesn't hold its set for ~ more than half an hour. By that time I'm so sick and tired i 
of their remarks that I race to the bathroom and restore my hair to its normal mass 
of curls. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

This morning I was wondering whether you ever felt like a cow, having to chew my 
stale news over and over again until you're so fed up with the monotonous fare that 
you yawn and secretly wish Anne would dig up something new. 

Sorry, I know you find it dull as ditchwater, but imagine how sick and tired I am of 
hearing the same old stuff. If the talk at mealtime isn't about politics or good food, 
then Mother or Mrs. van D. trot out stories about their childhood that we've heard a 
thousand times before, or Dussel goes on and on about beautiful racehorses, his 
Charlotte's extensive wardrobe, leaky rowboats, boys who can swim at the age of four, 
aching muscles and frightened patients. It all boils down to this: whenever one of the 
eight of us opens his mouth, the other seven can finish the story for him. We know 
the punch line of every joke before it gets told, so that whoever's telling it is left to 
laugh alone. The various milkmen, grocers and butchers of the two former housewives 
have been praised to the skies or run into the ground so many times that in our 
imaginations they've grown as old as Methuselah; there's absolutely no chance of 
anything new or fresh being brought up for discussion in the Annex. 

Still, all this might be bearable if only the grown-ups weren't in the habit of repeating 
the stories we hear from Mr. Kleiman, jan or Miep, each time embellishing them with 
a few details of their own, so that I often have to pinch my arm under the table to 
keep myself from setting the enthusiastic storyteller on the right track. Little children, 
such as Anne, must never, ever correct their elders, no matter how many blunders 
they make or how often they let their imaginations run away with them. 

Jan and Mr. Kleiman love talking about people who have gone underground or into 
hiding; they know we're eager to hear about others in our situation and that we truly 
sympathize with the sorrow of those who've been arrested as well as the joy of 
prisoners who've been freed. 

Going underground or into hiding has become as routine as the proverbial pipe and 
slippers that used to await the man of the house after a long day at work. There are 
many resistance groups, such as Free Netherlands, that forge identity cards, provide 
financial support to those in hiding, organize hiding places and find work for young 
Christians who go underground. It's amazing how much these generous and unselfish 

people do, risking their own lives to help and save others. 

The best example of this is our own helpers, who have managed to pull us through so 
far and will hopefully bring us safely to shore, because otherwise they'll find 
themselves sharing the fate of those they're trying to protect. Never have they uttered 
a single word about the burden we must be, never have they complained that we're 
too much trouble. They come upstairs every day and talk to the men about business 
and politics, to the women about food and wartime difficulties and to the children 
about books and newspapers. They put on their most cheerful expressions, bring 
flowers and gifts for birthdays and holidays and are always ready to do what they can. 
That's something we should never forget; while others display their heroism in battle 
or against the Germans, our helpers prove theirs every day by their good spirits and 

The most bizarre stories are making the rounds, yet most of them are really true. For 
instance, Mr. Kleiman reported this week that a soccer match was held in the province 
of Gelderland; one team consisted entirely of men who had gone underground, and the 
other of eleven Military Policemen. In Hilversum, new registration cards were issued. 
In order for the many people in hiding to get their rations (you have to show this 
card to obtain your ration book or else pay 60 guilders a book), the registrar asked all 
those hiding in that district to pick up their cards at a specified hour, when the 
documents could be collected at a separate table. 

All the same, you have to be careful that stunts like these don't reach the ears of the 

Yours, Anne 

My dearest Kit, 

Another Sunday has rolled around; I don't mind them as much as I did in the 
beginning, but they're boring enough. 

I still haven't gone to the warehouse yet, but maybe sometime soon. Last night I went 
downstairs in the dark, all by myself, after having been there with Father a few nights 
before. I stood at the top of the stairs while German planes flew back and forth, and I 
knew I was on my own, that I couldn't count on others for support. My fear vanished. 
I looked up at the sky and trusted in God. 

I have an intense need to be alone. Father has noticed I'm not my usual self, but I 
can't tell him what's bothering me. All I want to do is scream "Let me be, leave me 

Who knows, perhaps the day will come when I'm left alone more than I'd like! 

Anne Frank 

Dearest Kitty, 

Invasion fever is mounting daily throughout the country. If you were here, I'm sure 
you'd be as impressed as I am at the many preparations, though you'd no doubt laugh 
at all the fuss we're making. Who knows, it may all be for nothing! 

The papers are full of invasion news and are driving everyone insane with such 
statements as: "In the event of a British landing in Holland, the Germans will do what 
they can to defend the country, even flooding it, if necessary." They've published 
maps of Holland with the potential flood areas marked. Since large portions of 
Amsterdam were shaded in, our first question was what we should do if the water in 
the streets rose to above our waists. This tricky question elicited a variety of 

"It'll be impossible to walk or ride a bike, so we'll have to wade through the water." 

"Don't be silly. We'll have to try and swim. We'll all put on our bathing suits and caps 
and swim underwater as much as we can, so nobody can see we're Jews." 

"Oh, baloney! I can just imagine the ladies swimming with the rats biting their legs!" 
(That was a man, of course: we'll see who screams loudest!) 

"We won't even be able to leave the house. The warehouse is so unstable it'll collapse 
if there's a flood." 

"Listen, everyone, all joking aside, we really ought to try and get a boat." 

"Why bother? I have a better idea. We can each take a packing crate from the attic 
and row with a wooden spoon." 

I'm going to walk on stilts. I used to be a whiz at it when I was young. 

"Jan Gies won't need to. He'll let his wife ride piggyback, and then Miep will be on 

So now you have a rough idea of what's going on, don't you, Kit? This lighthearted 
banter is all very amusing, but reality will prove otherwise. The second question about 
the invasion was bound to arise: what should we do if the Germans evacuate 

"Leave the city along with the others. Disguise ourselves as well as we can." 

"Whatever happens, don't go outside! The best thing to do is to stay put! The 

Germans are capable of herding the entire population of Holland into Germany, where 
they'll all die." 

"Of course we'll stay here. This is the safest place. 

We'll try to talk Kleiman and his family into coming here to live with us. We'll 

somehow get hold of a bag of wood shavings, so we can sleep on the floor. Let's ask 

Miep and Kleiman to bring some blankets, just in case. And we'll order some extra 
cereal grains to supplement the sixty-five pounds we already have. Jan can try to find 
some more beans. At the moment we've got about sixty-five pounds of beans and ten 
pounds of split peas. And don't forget the fifty cans of vegetables." 

"What about the rest, Mother? Give us the latest figures.' , 

"Ten cans of fish, forty cans of milk, twenty pounds of powdered milk, three bottles 
of oil, four crocks of butter, four jars of meat, two big jars of strawberries, two jars 
of raspberries, twenty jars of tomatoes, ten pounds of oatmeal, nine pounds of rice. 
That's it." 

Our provisions are holding out fairly well. All the same, we have to feed the office 
staff, which means dipping into our stock every week, so it's not as much as it seems. 
We have enough coal and firewood, candles too. 

"Let's all make little moneybags to hide in our clothes so we can take our money with 
us if we need to leave here." 

"We can make lists of what to take first in case we have to run for it, and pack our 
knapsacks in advance." 

"When the time comes, we'll put two people on the lookout, one in the loft at the 
front of the house and one in the back." 

"Hey, what's the use of so much food if there isn't any water, gas or electricity?" 

"We'll have to cook on the wood stove. Filter the water and boil it. We should clean 
some big jugs and fill them with water. We can also store water in the three kettles 
we use for canning, and in the washtub." 

"Besides, we still have about two hundred and thirty pounds of winter potatoes in the 
spice storeroom." 

All day long that's all I hear. Invasion, invasion, nothing but invasion. Arguments about 
going hungry, dying, bombs, fire extinguishers, sleeping bags, identity cards, poison 
gas, etc., etc. Not exactly cheerful. 

A good example of the explicit warnings of the male contingent is the following 
conversation with Jan: 

Annex: "We're afraid that when the Germans retreat, they'll take the entire population 
with them." 

Jan: "That's impossible. They haven't got enough trains." 

Annex: "Trains? Do you really think they'd put civilians on trains? Absolutely not. 
Everyone would have to hoof it." (Or, as Dussel always says, per pedes apostolorum.) 

Jan: "I can't believe that. You're always looking on the dark side. What reason would 
they have to round up all the civilians and take them along?" 

Annex: "Don't you remember Goebbels saying that if the Germans have to go, they'll 
slam the doors to all the occupied territories behind them?" 

Jan: "They've said a lot of things." 

Annex: "Do you think the Germans are too noble or humane to do it? Their reasoning 
is: if we go under, we'll drag everyone else down with us." 

Jan: "You can say what you like, I just don't believe 

Annex: "It's always the same old story. No one wants to see the danger until it's 

staring them in the face. 

Jan: "But you don't know anything for sure. You're just making an assumption." 

Annex: "Because we've already been through it all ourselves, First in Germany and 
then here. What do you think's happening in Russia?" 

Jan: "You shouldn't include the Jews. I don't think anyone knows what's going on in 
Russia. The British and the Russians are probably exaggerating for propaganda 
purposes, just like the Germans." 

Annex: "Absolutely not. The BBC has always told the truth. And even if the news is 
slightly exaggerated, the facts are bad enough as they are. You can't deny that 
millions of peace-loving citizens in Poland and Russia have been murdered or gassed." 

I'll spare you the rest of our conversations. I'm very calm and take no notice of all 
the fuss. I've reached the point where I hardly care whether I live or die. The world 
will keep on turning without me, and I can't do anything to change events anyway. I'll 
just let matters take their course and concentrate on studying and hope that everything 
will be all right in the end. 

Yours, Anne 

Dear Kitty, 

I can't tell you how I feel. One minute I'm longing for peace and quiet, and the next 
for a little fun. We've forgotten how to laugh — I mean, laughing so hard you can t 

This morning I had "the giggles"; you know, the kind we used to have at school. 
Margot and I were giggling like real teenagers. 

Last night there was another scene with Mother. Margot was tucking her wool blanket 
around her when suddenly she leapt out of bed and carefully examined the blanket. 
What do you think she found? A pin! Mother had patched the blanket and forgotten to 
take it out. Father shook his head meaningfully and made a comment about how 
careless Mother is. Soon afterward Mother came in from the bathroom, and just to 
tease her I said, "Du bist doch eine echte Rabenmutter." [Oh, you are cruel.] 

Of course, she asked me why I'd said that, and we told her about the pin she'd 
overlooked. She immediately assumed her haughtiest expression and said, "You're a 
fine one to talk. When you're sewing, the entire floor is covered with pins. And look, 
you've left the manicure set lying around again. You never put that away either!" 

I said I hadn't used it, and Margot backed me up, since she was the guilty party. 

Mother went on talking about how messy I was until I got fed up and said, rather 
curtly, "I wasn't even the one who said you were careless. I'm always getting blamed 
for other people's mistakes!" 

Mother fell silent, and less than a minute later I was obliged to kiss her good-night. 
This incident may not have been very important, but these days everything gets on 
my nerves. 

Anne Mary Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

The sun is shining, the sky is deep blue, there's a magnificent breeze, and I'm longing 
— really longing — for everything: conversation, freedom, friends, being alone. I 
long. . . to cry! I feel as if I were about to explode. I know crying would help, but I 
can't cry. I'm restless. I walk from one room to another, breathe through the crack in 
the window frame, feel my heart beating as if to say, "Fulfill my longing at last. . ." 

I think spring is inside me. I feel spring awakening, I feel it in my entire body and 
soul. I have to force myself to act normally. I'm in a state of utter confusion, don't 
know what to read, what to write, what to do. I only know that I'm longing for 
something. . . 

Yours, Anne 



Dearest Kitty, 

A lot has changed for me since Saturday. What's happened is this: I was longing for 

something (and still am), but. . . a small, a very small, part of the problem has been 

On Sunday morning I noticed, to my great joy (I'll be honest with you), that Peter 
kept looking at me. Not in the usual way. I don't know, I can't explain it, but I 
suddenly had the feeling he wasn't as in love with Margot as I used to think. All day 
long I tried not to look at him too much, because whenever I did, I caught him looking 
at me and then — well, it made me feel wonderful inside, and that's not a feeling I 
should have too often. 

Sunday evening everyone, except Pirn and me, was clustered around the radio, 
listening to the "Immortal Music of the German Masters." Dussel kept twisting and 
turning the knobs, which annoyed Peter, and the others too. After restraining himself 
for half an hour, Peter asked somewhat irritably if he would stop fiddling with the 
radio. Dussel replied in his haughtiest tone, "Ich mach' das schon!" [I'll decide that.] 
Peter got angry and made an insolent remark. Mr. van Daan sided with him, and 
Dussel had to back down. That was it. 

The reason for the disagreement wasn't particularly interesting in and of itself, but 
Peter has apparently taken the matter very much to heart, because this morning, when 
I was rummaging around in the crate of books in the attic, Peter came up and began 
telling me what had happened. I didn't know anything about it, but Peter soon realized 
he'd found an attentive listener and started warming up to his subject. 

"Well, it's like this," he said. "I don't usually talk much, since I know beforehand I'll 
just be tongue-tied. I start stuttering and blushing and I twist my words around so 
much I finally have to stop, because I can't find the right words. That's what happened 
yesterday. I meant to say something entirely different, but once I started, I got all 
mixed up. It's awful. I used to have a bad habit, and sometimes I wish I still did: 
whenever I was mad at someone, I'd beat them up instead of arguing with them. I 
know this method won't get me anywhere, and that's why I admire you. You're never 
at a loss for words: you say exactly what you want to say and aren't in the least bit 

"Oh, you're wrong about that," I replied. "Most of what I say comes out very 
differently from the way I'd planned. Plus I talk too much and too long, and that's just 
as bad." 

"Maybe, but you have the advantage that no one can see you're embarrassed. You 
don't blush or go to pieces." 

I couldn't help being secretly amused at his words. However, since I wanted him to go 
on talking quietly about himself, I hid my laughter, sat down on a cushion on the floor, 
wrapped my arms around my knees and gazed at him intently. 

I'm glad there's someone else in this house who flies into the same rages as I do. 
Peter seemed relieved that he could criticize Dussel without being afraid I'd tell. As 
for me, I was pleased too, because I sensed a strong feeling of fellowship, which I 
only remember having had with my girlfriends. 

Yours, Anne 


The minor run-in with Dussel had several repercussions, for which he had only 
himself to blame. Monday evening Dussel came in to see Mother and told her 

triumphantly that Peter had asked him that morning if he'd slept well, and then added 

how sorry he was about what had happened Sunday evening — he hadn't really 
meant what he'd said. Dussel assured him he hadn't taken it to heart. So everYthing 
was right as rain again. Mother passed this story on to me, and I was secretly amazed 
that Peter, who'd been so angry at Dussel, had humbled himself, despite all his 

assurances to the contrary. 

I couldn't refrain from sounding Peter out on the subject, and he instantly replied that 
Dussel had been lying. You should have seen Peter's face. I wish I'd had a camera. 
Indignation, rage, indecision, agitation and much more crossed his face in rapid 


That evening Mr. van Daan and Peter really told Dussel off. But it couldn't have been 
all that bad, since Peter had another dental appointment today. 

Actually, they never wanted to speak to each other again. 


Peter and I hadn't talked to each other all day, except for a few meaningless words. It 
was too cold to go up to the attic, and anyway, it was Margot's birthday. At 
twelve-thirty he came to look at the presents and hung around chatting longer than 
was strictly necessary, something he'd never have done otherwise. But I got my 
chance in the afternoon. Since I felt like spoiling Margot on her birthday, I went to 
get the coffee, and after that the potatoes. When I came to Peter's room, he 
immediately took his papers off the stairs, and I asked if I should close the trapdoor 

to the attic. 

"Sure," he said, "go ahead. When you're ready to come back down, just knock and I'll 
open it for you." 

I thanked him, went upstairs and spent at least ten minutes searching around in the 
barrel for the smallest potatoes. My back started aching, and the attic was cold. 
Naturally, I didn't bother to knock but opened the trap-door myself. But he obligingly 
got up and took the pan out of my hands. 

"I did my best, but I couldn't find any smaller ones." 

"Did you look in the big barrel?" 

"Yes, I've been through them all." 

By this time I was at the bottom of the stairs, and he examined the pan of potatoes 
he was still holding. "Oh, but these are fine," he said, and added, as I took the pan 
from him, "My compliments!" 

As he said this, he gave me such a warm, tender look that I started glowing inside. I 
could tell he wanted to please me, but since he couldn't make a long complimentary 
speech, he said everything with his eyes. I understood him so well and was very 
grateful. It still makes me happy to think back to those words and that look! 

When I went downstairs, Mother said she needed more potatoes, this time for dinner, 
so I volunteered to go back up. When I entered Peter's room, I apologized for 

disturbing him again. As I was going up the stairs, he stood up, went over to stand 

between the stairs and the wall, grabbed my arm and tried to stop me. 

"I'll go," he said. "I have to go upstairs anyway." 

I replied that it wasn't really necessary, that I didn't have to get only the small ones 
this time. Convinced, he let go of my arm. On my way back, he opened the trapdoor 

and once again took the pan from me. Standing by the door, I asked, "What are you 

working on?" 

"French," he replied. 

I asked if I could take a look at his lessons. Then I went to wash my hands and sat 
down across from him on the divan. 

After I'd explained some French to him, we began to talk. He told me that after the 
war he wanted to go to the Dutch East Indies and live on a rubber plantation. He 
talked about his life at home, the black market and how he felt like a worthless bum. 
I told him he had a big inferiority complex. He talked about the war, saying that 
Russia and England were bound to go to war against each other, and about the Jews. 
He said life would have been much easier if he'd been a Christian or could become 
one after the war. I asked if he wanted to be baptized, but that wasn't what he meant 
either. He said he'd never be able to feel like a Christian, but that after the war he'd 
make sure nobody would know he was Jewish. I felt a momentary pang. It's such a 
shame he still has a touch of dishonesty in him. 

Peter added, "The Jews have been and always will be the chosen people!" 

I answered, "Just this once, I hope they'll be chosen for something good!" 

But we went on chatting very pleasantly, about Father, about judging human character 
and all sorts of things, so many that I can't even remember them all. 

I left at a quarter past five, because Bep had arrived. 

That evening he said something else I thought was nice. We were talking about the 
picture of a movie star I'd once given him, which has been hanging in his room for at 
least a year and a half. He liked it so much that I offered to give him a few more. 

"No," he replied, "I'd rather keep the one I've got. I look at it every day, and the 
people in it have become my friends." 

I now have a better understanding of why he always hugs Mouschi so tightly. He 
obviously needs affection too. I forgot to mention something else he was talking about. 
He said, "No, I'm not afraid, except when it comes to things about myself, but I'm 
working on that." 

Peter has a huge inferiority complex. For example, he always thinks he's so stupid and 
we're so smart. When I help him with French, he thanks me a thousand times. One of 
these days I'm going to say, "Oh, cut it out! You're much better at English and 

Anne Frank 


Dear Kitty 

I was upstairs this morning, since I promised Mrs. van D. I'd read her some of my 
stories. I began with "Eva's Dream," which she liked a lot, and then I read a few 
passages from "The Secret Annex," which had her in stitches. Peter also listened for a 
while (just the last part) and asked if I'd come to his room sometime to read more. 

I decided I had to take a chance right then and there, so I got my notebook and let 
him read that bit where Cady and Hans talk about God. I can't really tell what kind of 
impression it made on him. He said something I don't quite remember, not about 
whether it was good, but about the idea behind it. I told him I just wanted him to see 
that I didn't write only amusing things. He nodded, and I left the room. We'll see if I 
hear anything more! 

Yours, Anne Frank 


My dearest Kitty, 

Whenever I go upstairs, it's always so I can see "him." Now that I have something to 
look forward to, my life here has improved greatly. 

At least the object of my friendship is always here, and I don't have to be afraid of 
rivals (except for Margot). Don't think I'm in love, because I'm not, but I do have the 
feeling that something beautiful is going to develop between Peter and me, a kind of 
friendship and a feeling of trust. I go see him whenever I get the chance, and it's not 
the way it used to be, when he didn't know what to make of me. On the contrary, 
he's still talking away as I'm heading out the door. Mother doesn't like me going 
upstairs. She always says I'm bothering Peter and that I should leave him alone. 
Honestly, can't she credit me with some intuition? She always looks at me so oddly 
when I go to Peter's room. When I come down again, she asks me where I've been. 
It's terrible, but I'm beginning to hate her! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

It's Saturday again, and that should tell you enough. This morning all was quiet. I 
spent nearly an hour upstairs making meatballs, but I only spoke to "him" in passing. 

When everyone went upstairs at two-thirty to either read or take a nap, I went 
downstairs, with blanket and all, to sit at the desk and read or write. Before long I 
couldn't take it anymore. I put my head in my arms and sobbed my heart out. The 
tears streamed down my cheeks, and I felt desperately unhappy. Oh, if only' 'he" had 
come to comfort me. 

It was past four by the time I went upstairs again. At five o'clock I set off to get 
some potatoes, hoping once again that we'd meet, but while I was still in the bathroom 
fixing my hair, he went to see Boche. 

I wanted to help Mrs. van D. and went upstairs with my book and everything, but 
suddenly I felt the tears coming again. I raced downstairs to the bathroom, grabbing 
the hand mirror on the way. I sat there on the toilet, fully dressed, long after I was 
through, my tears leaving dark spots on the red of my apron, and I felt utterly 

Here's what was going through my mind: "Oh, I'll never reach Peter this way. Who 
knows, maybe he doesn't even like me and he doesn't need anyone to confide in. 
Maybe he only thinks of me in a casual sort of way. I'll have to go back to being 
alone, without anyone to confide in and without Peter, without hope, comfort or 
anything to look forward to. Oh, if only I could rest my head on his shoulder and not 
feel so hopelessly alone and deserted! Who knows, maybe he doesn't care for me at 
all and looks at the others in the same tender way. Maybe I only imagined it was 
especially for me. Oh, Peter, if only you could hear me or see me. If the truth is 
disappointing, I won't be able to bear it." 

A little later I felt hopeful and full of expectation again, though my tears were still 
flowing — on the inside. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


What happens in other people's houses during the rest of the week happens here in 
the Annex on Sundays. While other people put on their best clothes and go strolling in 
the sun, we scrub, sweep and do the laundry. 

Eight o'clock. Though the rest of us prefer to sleep in, 

Dussel gets up at eight. He goes to the bathroom, then downstairs, then up again and 
then to the bathroom, where he devotes a whole hour to washing himself. 

Nine-thirty. The stoves are lit, the blackout screen is taken down, and Mr. van Daan 
heads for the bathroom. One of my Sunday morning ordeals is having to lie in bed and 
look at Dussel's back when he's praying. I know it sounds strange, but a praying 
Dussel is a terrible sight to behold. It's not that he cries or gets sentimental, not at 
all, but he does spend a quarter of an hour — an entire fifteen minutes — rocking 
from his toes to his heels. Back and forth, back and forth. It goes on forever, and if I 
don't shut my eyes tight, my head starts to spin. 

Ten-fifteen. The van Daans whistle; the bathroom's free. In the Frank family quarters, 
the first sleepy faces are beginning to emerge from their pillows. Then everything 
happens fast, fast, fast. Margot and I take turns doing the laundry. Since it's quite 
cold downstairs, we put on pants and head scarves. Meanwhile, Father is busy in the 
bathroom. Either Margot or I have a turn in the bathroom at eleven, and then we're all 

Eleven-thirty. Breakfast. I won't dwell on this, since there's enough talk about food 
without my bringing the subject up as well. 

Twelve-fifteen. We each go our separate ways. Father, clad in overalls, gets down on 
his hands and knees and brushes the rug so vigorously that the room is enveloped in a 
cloud of dust. Mr. Dussel makes the beds (all wrong, of course), always whistling the 
same Beethoven violin concerto as he goes about his work. Mother can be heard 
shuffling around the attic as she hangs up the washing. Mr. van Daan puts on his hat 
and disappears into the lower regions, usually followed by Peter and Mouschi. Mrs. 
van D. dons a long apron, a black wool jacket and overshoes, winds a red wool scarf 
around her head, scoops up a bundle of dirty laundry and, with a well -rehearsed 
washerwoman's nod, heads downstairs. Margot and I do the dishes and straighten up 
the room. 

My dearest Kitty, 

The weather's been wonderful since yesterday, and I've perked up quite a bit. My 
writing, the best thing I have, is coming along well. I go to the attic almost every 
morning to get the stale air out of my lungs. This morning when I went there, Peter 
was busy cleaning up. He finished quickly and came over to where I was sitting on 

my favorite spot on the floor. The two of us looked out at the blue sky, the bare 
chestnut tree glistening with dew, the seagulls and other birds glinting with silver as 
they swooped through the air, and we were so moved and entranced that we couldn't 
speak. He stood with his head against a thick beam, while I sat. We breathed in the 
air, looked outside and both felt that the spell shouldn't be broken with words. We 
remained like this for a long while, and by the time he had to go to the loft to chop 
wood, I knew he was a good, decent boy. He climbed the ladder to the loft, and I 
followed; during the fifteen minutes he was chopping wood, we didn't say a word 
either. I watched him from where I was standing, and could see he was obviously 
doing his best to chop the right way and show off his strength. But I also looked out 
the open window, letting my eyes roam over a large part of Amsterdam, over the 
rooftops and on to the horizon, a strip of blue so pale it was almost invisible. 

"As long as this exists," I thought, "this sunshine and this cloudless sky, and as long 
as I can enjoy it, how can I be sad?" 

The best remedy for those who are frightened, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, 
somewhere they can be alone, alone with the sky, nature and God. For then and only 
then can you feel that everything is as it should be and that God wants people to be 
happy amid nature's beauty and simplicity. 

As long as this exists, and that should be forever, I know that there will be solace for 
every sorrow, whatever the circumstances. I firmly believe that nature can bring 
comfort to all who suffer. 

Oh, who knows, perhaps it won't be long before I can share this overwhelming feeling 
of happiness with someone who feels the same as I do. 

Yours, Anne 

P.S. Thoughts: To Peter. 

We've been missing out on so much here, so very much, and for such a long time. I 
miss it just as much as you do. I'm not talking about external things, since we're well 
provided for in that sense; I mean the internal things. Like you, I long for freedom 
and fresh air, but I think we've been amply compensated for their loss. On the inside, 
I mean. 

This morning, when I was sitting in front of the window and taking a long, deep look 
outside at God and nature, I was happy, just plain happy. Peter, as long as people feel 
that kind of happiness within themselves, the joy of nature, health and much more 

besides, they'll always be able to recapture that happiness. 

Riches, prestige, everything can be lost. But the happiness in your own heart can only 
be dimmed; it will always be there, as long as you live, to make you happy again. 

Whenever you're feeling lonely or sad, try going to the loft on a beautiful day and 
looking outside. Not at the houses and the rooftops, but at the sky. As long as you 

can look fearlessly at the sky, you'll know that you're pure within and will find 

happiness once more. 


My dearest Kitty, 

From early in the morning to late at night, all I do is think about Peter. I fall asleep 
with his image before my eyes, dream about him and wake up with him still looking at 

I have the strong feeling that Peter and I aren't really as different as we may seem 
on the surface, and I'll explain why: neither Peter nor I have a mother. His is too 

superficial, likes to flirt and doesn't concern herself much with what goes on in his 

head. Mine takes an active interest in my life, but has no tact, sensitivity or motherly 

Both Peter and I are struggling with our innermost feelings. We're still unsure of 
ourselves and are too vulnerable, emotionally, to be dealt with so roughly. Whenever 
that happens, I want to run outside or hide my feelings. Instead, I bang the pots and 
pans, splash the water and am generally noisy, so that everyone wishes I were miles 
away. Peter's reaction is to shut himself up, say little, sit quietly and daydream, all 
the while carefully hiding his true self. 

But how and when will we finally reach each other? 

I don't know how much longer I can continue to keep this yearning under control. 
Yours, Anne M. Frank 

My dearest Kitty, 

It's like a nightmare, one that goes on long after I'm awake. I see him nearly every 
hour of the day and yet I can't be with him, I can't let the others notice, and I have 
to pretend to be cheerful, though my heart is aching. 

Peter Schiff and Peter van Daan have melted into one Peter, who's good and kind and 
whom I long for desperately. Mother's horrible, Father's nice, which makes him even 
more exasperating, and Margot's the worst, since she takes advantage of my smiling 
face to claim me for herself, when all I want is to be left alone. 

Peter didn't join me in the attic, but went up to the loft to do some carpentry work. 
At every rasp and bang, another chunk of my courage broke off and I was even more 
unhappy. In the distance a clock was tolling' 'Be pure in heart, be pure in mind!" 

I'm sentimental, I know. I'm despondent and foolish, I know that too. 

Oh, help me! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

My own affairs have been pushed to the background by ... a break-in. I'm boring 
you with all my break-ins, but what can I do when burglars take such pleasure in 
honoring Gies & Go. with their presence? This incident is much more complicated than 
the last one, in July 1943. 

Last night at seven-thirty Mr. van Daan was heading, as usual, for Mr. Kugler's office 
when he saw that both the glass door and the office door were open. He was 
surprised, but he went on through and was even more astonished to see that the 
alcove doors were open as well and that there was a terrible mess in the front office. 

"There's been a burglary" flashed through his mind. But just to make sure, he went 
downstairs to the front door, checked the lock and found everything closed. "Bep and 

Peter must just have been very careless this evening," Mr. van. D. concluded. He 
remained for a while in Mr. Kugler's office, switched off the lamp and went upstairs 
without worrying much about the open doors or the messy office. 

Early this morning Peter knocked at our door to tell us that the front door was wide 

open and that the projector and Mr. Kugler's new briefcase had disappeared from the 
closet. Peter was instructed to lock the door. Mr. van Daan told us his discoveries of 
the night before, and we were extremely worried. 

The only explanation is that the burglar must have had a duplicate key, since there 
were no signs of a forced entry. He must have sneaked in early in the evening, shut 
the door behind him, hidden himself when he heard Mr. van Daan, fled with the loot 
after Mr. van Daan went upstairs and, in his hurry, not bothered to shut the door. 

Who could have our key? Why didn't the burglar go to the warehouse? Was it one of 
our own warehouse employees, and will he turn us in, now that he's heard Mr. van 
Daan and maybe even seen him? 

It's really scary, since we don't know whether the burglar will take it into his head to 
try and get in again. Or was he so startled when he heard someone else in the 
building that he'll stay away? 

Yours, Anne 

P.S. We'd be delighted if you could hunt up a good detective for us. Obviously, there's 
one condotion: he must be relied upon not to mform on people in hiding. 


Dearest Kitty, 

Margot and I were in the attic together today. I can't enjoy being there with her the 
way I imagine it'd be with Peter (or someone else). I know she feels the same about 
most things as I do! 

While doing the dishes, Bep began talking to Mother and Mrs. van Daan about how 
discouraged she gets. What help did those two offer her? Our tactless mother, 
especially, only made things go from bad to worse. Do you know what her advice 
was? That she should think about all the other people in the world who are suffering! 
How can thinking about the misery of others help if you're miserable yourself? I said 
as much. Their response, of course, was that I should stay out of conversations of 
this sort. 

The grown-ups are such idiots! As if Peter, Margot, Bep and I didn't all have the 
same feelings. The only thing that helps is a mother's love, or that of a very, very 
close friend. But these two mothers don't understand the first thing about us! Perhaps 

Mrs. van Daan does, a bit more than Mother. Oh, I wish I could have said something 
to poor Bep, something that I know from my own experience would have helped. But 
Father came between us, pushing me roughly aside. They're all so stupid! 

I also talked to Margot about Father and Mother, about how nice it could be here if 
they weren't so aggravating. We'd be able to organize evenings in which everyone 
could take turns discussing a given subject. But we've already been through all that. 
It's impossible for me to talk here! Mr. van Daan goes on the offensive, Mother i gets 
sarcastic and can't say anythina in a normal voice, Father doesn't feel like taking part, 
nor does Mr. Dussel, and Mrs. van D. is attacked so often that she just sits there 
with a red face, hardly able to put up a fight anymore. And what about us? We aren't 
allowed to have an opinion! My, my, aren't they progressive! Not have an opinion! 
People can tell you to shut up, but they can't keep you from having an opinion. You 
can't forbid someone to have an opinion, no matter how young they are! The only 
thing that would help Bep, Margot, Peter and me would be great love and devotion, 
which we don't get here. And no one, especially not the idiotic sages around here, is 
capable of understanding us, since we're more sensitive and much more advanced in 
our thinking than any of them ever suspect! 

Love, what is love? I don't think you can really put it into words. Love is 
understanding someone, caring for him, sharing his joys and sorrows. This eventually 
includes physical love. You've shared something, given something away and received 
something in return, whether or not you're married, whether or not you have a baby. 
Losing your virtue doesn't matter, as long as you know that for as long as you live 

you'll have someone at your side who understands you, and who doesn't have to be 

shared with anyone else! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

At the moment, Mother's grouching at me again; she's clearly jealous because I talk to 
Mrs. van Daan more than to her. What do I care! 

I managed to get hold of Peter this afternoon, and we talked for at least forty-five 
minutes. He wanted to tell me something about himself, but didn't find it easy. He 
finally got it out, though it took a long time. I honestly didn't know whether it was 
better for me to stay or to go. But I wanted so much to help him! I told him about 
Bep and how tactless our mothers are. He told me that his parents fight constantly, 
about politics and cigarettes and all kinds of things. As I've told you before, Peter's 

very shy, but not too shy to admit that he'd be perfectly happy not to see his parents 

for a year or two. "My father isn't as nice as he looks," he said. "But in the matter of 
the cigarettes, Mother's absolutely right." 

I also told him about my mother. But he came to Father's defense. He thought he was 
a "terrific guy." 

Tonight when I was hanging up my apron after doing the dishes, he called me over 
and asked me not to say anything downstairs about his parents' having had another 
argument and not being on speaking terms. I promised, though I'd already told Margot. 
But I'm sure Margot won't pass it on. 

"Oh no, Peter," I said, you don't have to worry about me. I've learned not to blab 
everything I hear. I never repeat what you tell me." 

He was glad to hear that. I also told him what terrible gossips we are, and said, 
"Margot's quite right, of course, when she says I'm not being honest, because as much 
as I want to stop gossiping, there's nothing I like better than discussing Mr. Dussel." 

"It's good that you admit it," he said. He blushed, and his sincere compliment almost 
embarrassed me too. 

Then we talked about "upstairs" and "downstairs" some more. Peter was really rather 
surprised to hear that don't like his parents. "Peter," I said, "you know I'm always 
honest, so why shouldn't I tell you this as well? We can see their faults too." 

I added, "Peter, I'd really like to help you. Will you let me? You're caught in an 
awkward position, and I know, even though you don't say anything, that it upsets you." 

"Oh, your help is always welcome!" 

"Maybe it'd be better for you to talk to Father. You can tell him anything, he won't 
pass it on." 

"I know, he's a real pal." 

"You like him a lot, don't you?" 

Peter nodded, and I continued, "Well, he likes you too, you know!" 

He looked up quickly and blushed. It was really touching to see how happy these few 
words made him. 

'You think so?" he asked. 

"Yes," I said. "You can tell from the little things he lets slip now and then." 

Then Mr. van Daan came in to do some dictating. 

Peter's a "terrific guy," just like Father! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
My dearest Kitty, 

When I looked into the candle tonight, I felt calm and happy again. It seems Grandma 
is in that candle, and it's Grandma who watches over and protects me and makes me 
feel happy again. But. . . there's someone else who governs all my moods and that's. . 
. Peter. I went to get the potatoes today, and while I was standing on the stairway 
with my pan full, he asked, "What did you do during the lunch break?" 

I sat down on the stairs, and we began to talk. The potatoes didn't make it to the 
kitchen until five-fifteen (an hour after I'd gone to get them). Peter didn't say 
anything more about his parents! we just talked about books and about the past. Oh, 
he gazes at me with such warmth in his eyes! I don't think it will take much for me 
to fall in love with him. 

He brought the subject up this evening. I went to his room after peeling potatoes and 
remarked on how hot it was. "You can tell the temperature by looking at Margot and 
me, because we turn white when it's cold and red when it's hot." I said. 

"In love?" he asked. 

"Why should I be in love?" It was a pretty silly answer (or, rather, question). 

"Why not?" he said, and then it was time for dinner. 

What did he mean? Today I finally managed to ask him whether my chatter bothered 
him. All he said was, 

"Oh, it's fine with me!" I can't tell how much of his reply was due to shyness. 

Kitty, I sound like someone who's in love and can talk about nothing but her dearest 

darling. And Peter is a darling. Will I ever be able to tell him that? Only if he thinks 
the same of me, but I'm the kind of person you have to treat with kid gloves, I know 
that all too well. 

And he likes to be left alone, so I don't know how much he likes me. In any case, 
we're getting to know each other a little better. I wish we dared to say more. But 
who knows, maybe that time will come sooner than I think! 

Once or twice a day he gives me a knowing glance, I wink back, and we're both 
happy. It seems crazy to talk about his being happy, and yet I have the overwhelming 
feeling he thinks the same way I do. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dear Kitty, 

This is the first Saturday in months that hasn't been tiresome, dreary and boring. The 
reason is Peter. This morning as I was on my way to the attic to hang up my apron, 
Father asked whether I wanted to stay and practice my French, and I said yes. We 
spoke French together for a while and I explained something to Peter, and then we 
worked on our English. Father read aloud from Dickens, and I was in seventh heaven, 
since I was sitting on Father's chair, close to Peter. 

I went downstairs at quarter to eleven. When I went back up at eleven-thirty, Peter 
was already waiting for me on the stairs. We talked until quarter to one. Whenever I 
leave the room, for example after a meal, and Peter has a chance and no one else can 
hear, he says, "Bye, Anne, see you later." 

Oh, I'm so happy! I wonder if he's going to fall in love with me after all? In any case, 
he's a nice boy, and you have no idea how good it is to talk to him! 

Mrs. van D. thinks it's all right for me to talk to 

Peter, but today she asked me teasingly, "Can I trust you two up there?" 

"Of course," I protested. "I take that as an insult!" 

Morning, noon and night, I look forward to seeing Peter. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

PS. Before I forget, last night everything was blanketed in snow. Now it's thawed and 
there's almost nothing left. 

MONDAY, MARCH 6, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Ever since Peter told me about his parents, I've felt a certain sense of responsibthty 
toward him-don't you think that's strange? It's as though their quarrels were just as 
much my business as his, and yet I don't dare bring it up anymore, because I'm afraid 
it makes him uncomfortable. I wouldn't want to intrude, not for all the money in the 

I can tell by Peter's face that he ponders things just as deeply as I do. Last night I 
was annoyed when Mrs. van D. scoffed, "The thinker!" Peter flushed and looked 
embarrassed, and I nearly blew my top. 

Why don't these people keep their mouths shut? 

You can't imagine what it's like to have to stand on the sidelines and see how lonely 
he is, without being able to do anything. I can imagine, as if I were in his place, how 
despondent he must sometimes feel at the quarrels. And about love. Poor Peter, he 
needs to be loved so much! 

It sounded so cold when he said he didn't need any friends. Oh, he's so wrong! I don't 
think he means it. He clings to his masculinity, his solitude and his feigned indif- 
ference so he can maintain his role, so he'll never, ever have to show his feelings. 
Poor Peter, how long can he keep it up? Won't he explode from this superhuman 

Oh, Peter, if only I could help you, if only you would let me! Together we could 
banish our loneliness, yours and mine! 

I've been doing a great deal of thinking, but not saying much. I'm happy when I see 
him, and happier still if the sun shines when we're together. I washed my hair 
yesterday, and because I knew he was next door, I was very rambunctious. I couldn't 
help it; the more quiet and serious I am on the inside, the noisier I get on the 

Who will be the first to discover the chink in my armor? 

It's just as well that the van Daans don't have a daughter. My conquest could never be 
so challenging, so beautiful and so nice with someone of the same sex! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

PS. You know I'm always honest with you, so I think I should tell you that I live from 
one encounter to the next. I keep hoping to discover that he's dying to see me, and 
I'm in raptures when I notice his bashful attempts. I think he'd like to be able to 
express himself as easily as I do; little does he know it's his awkwardness that I find 
so touching. 

Dearest Kitty, 

When I think back to my life in 1942, it all seems so unreal. The Anne Frank who 
enjoyed that heavenly existence was completely different from the one who has grown 
wise within these walls. Yes, it was heavenly. Five admirers on every street corner, 
twenty or so friends, the favorite of most of my teachers, spoiled rotten by Father 
and Mother, bags full of candy and a big allowance. What more could anyone ask for? 

You're probably wondering how I could have charmed all those people. Peter says It s 
ecause I m "attractive," but that isn't it entirely. The teachers were amused and 
entertained by my clever answers, my witty remarks, my smthng face and my critical 
mind. That's all I was: a terrible flirt, coquettish and amusing. I had a few plus points, 
which kept me in everybody's good graces: I was hardworking, honest and generous. I 
would never have refused anyone who wanted to peek at my answers, I was 
magnanimous with my candy, and I wasn't stuck-up. 

Would all that admiration eventually have made me overconfident? It's a good thing 
that, at the height of my glory, I was suddenly plunged into reality. It took me more 
than a year to get used to doing without admiration. 

How did they see me at school? As the class comedian, the eternal ringleader, never 
in a bad mood, never a crybaby. Was it any wonder that everyone wanted to bicycle 
to school with me or do me little favors? 

I look back at that Anne Frank as a pleasant, amusing, but superficial girl, who has 
nothing to do with me. What did Peter say about me? "Whenever I saw you, you were 

surrounded by a flock of girls and at least two boys, you were always laughing, and 
you were always the center of attention!" He was right. 

What's remained of that Anne Frank? Oh, I haven't forgotten how to laugh or toss off 
a remark, I'm just as good, if not better, at raking people over the coals, and I can 
still flirt and be amusing, if I want to be . . . 

But there's the catch. I'd like to live that seemingly carefree and happy life for an 
evening, a few days, a week. At the end of that week I'd be exhausted, and would be 
grateful to the first person to talk to me about something meaningful. I want friends, 
not admirers. Peo- pie who respect me for my character and my deeds, not my 
flattering smile. The circle around me would be much smaller, but what does that 
matter, as long as they're sincere? 

In spite of everything, I wasn't altogether happy in 1942; I often felt I'd been 
deserted, but because I was on the go all day long, I didn't think about it. I enjoyed 
myself as much as I could, trying consciously or unconsciously to fill the void with 

Looking back, I realize that this period of my life has irrevocably come to a close; my 
happy-go-lucky, carefree schooldays are gone forever. I don't even miss them. I've 
outgrown them. I can no longer just kid around, since my serious side is always there. 

I see my life up to New Year's 1944 as if I were looking through a powerful 
magnifying glass. When I was at home, my life was filled with sunshine. Then, in the 
middle of 1942, everything changed overnight. The quarrels, the accusations — I 
couldn't take it all in. I was caught off guard, and the only way I knew to keep my 
bearings was to talk back. 

The first half of 1943 brought crying spells, loneliness and the gradual realization of 
my faults and short- comings, which were numerous and seemed even more so. I 
filled the day with chatter, tried to draw Pirn closer to me and failed. This left me on 
my own to face the difficult task of improving myself so I wouldn't have to hear their 
reproaches, because they made me so despondent. 

The second half of the year was slightly better. I became a teenager, and was treated 
more like a grown-up. I began to think about things and to write stories, finally 

coming to the conclusion that the others no longer had anything to do with me. They 

had no right to swing me back and forth like a pendulum on a clock. I wanted to 
change myself in my own way. I realized I could man- age without my mother, 

completely and totally, and that hurt. But what affected me even more was the 

realization that I was never going to be able to confide in Father. I didn't trust anyone 
but myself. 

After New Year's the second big change occurred: my dream, through which I 
discovered my longing for ... a boy; not for a girlfriend, but for a boyfriend. I also 

discovered an inner happiness underneath my superficial and cheerful exterior. From 

time to time I was quiet. Now I live only for Peter, since what happens to me in the 

future depends largely on him! 

I lie in bed at night, after ending my prayers with the words "Ich Janke air fur all das 
Cute una Liebe una Schone,"* [* Thank you, God, for all that is good and dear and 
beautiful.] and I'm filled with joy. I think of going into hiding, my health and my 
whole being as das Cute; Peter's love (which is still so new and fragile and which 
neither of us dares to say aloud), the future, happiness and love as das Liebe; the 
world, nature and the tremendous beauty of everything, all that splendor, as das 

At such moments I don't think about all the misery, but about the beauty that still 
remains. This is where Mother and I differ greatly. Her advice in the face of 
melancholy is: "Think about all the suffering in the world and be thankful you're not 
part of it." My advice is: "Go outside, to the country, enjoy the sun and all nature has 
to offer. Go outside and try to recapture the happiness within yourself; think of all the 
beauty in yourself and in everything around you and be happy." 

I don't think Mother's advice can be right, because what are you supposed to do if 
you become part of the suffering? You'd be completely lost. On the contrary, beauty 
remains, even in misfortune. If you just look for it, you discover more and more 
happiness and regain your balance. A person who's happy will make others happy; a 
person who has courage and faith will never die in misery! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Margot and I have been writing each other notes, just for fun, of course. 

Anne: It's strange, but I can only remember the day after what has happened the night 
before. For example, I suddenly remembered that Mr. Dussel was snoring loudly last 
night. (It's now quarter to three on Wednesday af- ternoon and Mr. Dussel is snoring 
again, which is why it flashed through my mind, of course.) When I had to use the 
potty, I deliberately made more noise to get the snoring to stop. 

Margot: Which is better, the snoring or the gasping for air? 

Anne: The snoring's better, because it stops when I make noise, without waking the 
person in question. 

What I didn't write to Margot, but what I'll confess to you, dear Kitty, is that I've 
been dreaming of Peter a great deal. The night before last I dreamed I was skating 
right here in our living room with that little boy from the Apollo ice-skating rink; he 
was with his sister, the girl with the spindly legs who always wore the same blue 
dress. I introduced myself, overdoing it a bit, and asked him his name. It was Peter. 
In my dream I wondered just how many Peters I actually knew! 

Then I dreamed we were standing in Peter's room, facing each other beside the stairs. 
I said something to him; he gave me a kiss, but replied that he didn't love me all that 
much and that I shouldn't flirt. In a desperate and pleading voice I said, "I'm not 
flirting, Peter!" 

When I woke up, I was glad Peter hasn't said it after all. 

Last night I dreamed we were kissing each other, but 

Peter's cheeks were very disappointing: they weren't as soft as they looked. They 
were more like Father's cheeks — the cheeks of a man who already shaves. 

FRIDAY, MARCH 10, 1944 

My dearest Kitty, 

The proverb "Misfortunes never come singly" defi- nitely applies to today. Peter just 
got through saying it. Let me tell you all the awful things that have happened and that 
are still hanging over our heads. 

First, Miep is sick, as a result of Henk and Aagje's wedding yesterday. She caught 
cold in the Westerkerk, where the service was held. Second, Mr. Kleiman hasn't 
returned to work since the last time his stomach started bleeding, so Bep's been left 
to hold down the fort alone. Third, the police have arrested a man (whose name I 
won't put in writing). It's terrible not only for him, but for us as well, since he's been 
supplying us with potatoes, butter and jam. Mr. M., as I'll call him, has five children 
under the age of thirteen, and another on the way. 

Last night we had another little scare: we were in the middle of dinner when suddenly 
someone knocked on the wall next door. For the rest of the evening we were nervous 
and gloomy. 

Lately I haven't been at all in the mood to write down what's been going on here. I've 
been more wrapped up in myself. Don't get me wrong, I'm terribly upset about what's 
happened to poor, good-hearted Mr. M., but there's not much room for him in my 

Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday I was in Peter's room from four-thirty to 
five-fifteen. We worked on our French and chatted about one thing and another. I 
really look forward to that hour or so in the afternoon, but best of all is that I think 
Peter's just as pleased to see me. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 



Dearest Kitty, 

I haven't been able to sit still lately. I wander up- stairs and down and then back 
again. I like talking to Peter, but I'm always afraid of being a nuisance. He's told me a 
bit about the past, about his parents and about himself, but it's not enough, and every 
five minutes I wonder why I find myself longing for more. He used to think I was a 
real pain in the neck, and the feeling was mutual. I've changed my mind, but how do I 
know he's changed his? I think he has, but that doesn't necessarily mean we have to 
become the best of friends, although as far as I'm concerned, it would make our time 
here more bearable. But I won't let this drive me crazy. I spend enough time thinking 
about him and don't have to get you all worked up as well, simply because I'm so 

SUNDAY, MARCH 12, 1944 
Dearest Kitty, 

Things are getting crazier here as the days go by. 

Peter hasn't looked at me since yesterday. He's been acting as if he's mad at me. I'm 
doing my best not to chase after him and to talk to him as little as possible, but it's 

not easy! What's going on, what makes him keep me at arm's length one minute and 
rush back to my side the next? Perhaps I'm imagining that it's worse than it really is. 
Perhaps he's just moody like me, and tomorrow everything will be all right again! 

I have the hardest time trying to maintain a normal facade when I'm feeling so 
wretched and sad. I have to talk, help around the house, sit with the others and, 
above all, act cheerful! Most of all I miss the outdoors and having a place where I can 
be alone for as long as I want! I think I'm getting everything all mixed up, Kitty, but 
then, I'm in a state of utter confusion: on the one hand, I'm half crazy with desire for 
him, can hardly be in the same room without looking at him; and on the other hand, I 
wonder why he should matter to me so much and why I can't be calm again! 

Day and night, during every waking hour, I do nothing but ask myself, "Have you 
given him enough chance to be alone? Have you been spending too much time 
upstairs? Do you talk too much about serious subjects he's not yet ready to talk 
about? Maybe he doesn't even like you? Has it all been your imagination? But then 
why has he told you so much about himself? Is he sorry he did?" And a whole lot 

Yesterday afternoon I was so worn out by the sad news from the outside that I lay 
down on my divan for a nap. All I wanted was to sleep and not have to think. I slept 
until four, but then I had to go next door. It wasn't easy, answering all Mother's 
questions and inventing an excuse to explain my nap to Father. I pleaded a headache, 
which wasn't a lie, since I did have one. . . on the inside! 

Ordinary people, ordinary girls, teenagers like myself, would think I'm a little nuts 
with all my self-pity. But that's just it. I pour my heart out to you, and the rest of 
the time I'm as impudent, cheerful and self-confident as possible to avoid questions 
and keep from getting on my own nerves. 

Margot is very kind and would like me to confide in her, but I can't tell her 
everything. She takes me too seriously, far too seriously, and spends a lot of time 
thinking about her loony sister, looking at me closely whenever I open my mouth and 
wondering, "Is she acting, or does she really mean it?" 

It's because we're always together. I don't want the person I confide in to be around 
me all the time. When will I untangle my jumbled thoughts? When will I find inner 
peace again? 

Yours, Anne 

TUESDAY, MARCH 14, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

It might be amusing for you (though not for me) to hear what we're going to eat 
today. The cleaning lady is working downstairs, so at the moment I'm seated at the 
van Daans' oilcloth-covered table with a handkerchief sprinkled with fragrant prewar 
perfume pressed to my nose and mouth. You probably don't have the faintest idea 
what I'm talking about, so let me "begin at the begin- ning." The people who supply 
us with food coupons have been arrested, so we have just our five black-market ra- 
-, tion books-no coupons, no fats and oils. Since Miep and Mr. Kleiman are sick 
again, Bep can't manage the shop- ping. The food is wretched, and so are we. As of 
tomor- row, we won't have a scrap of fat, butter or margarine. We can't eat fried 
potatoes for breakfast (which we've been doing to save on bread), so we're having hot 
cereal instead, and because Mrs. van D. thinks we're starving, we bought some 
half-and-half. Lunch today consists of mashed potatoes and pickled kale. This 
explains the precautionary measure with the handkerchief. You wouldn't believe how 
much kale can stink when it's a few years old! The kitchen smells like a mixture of 
spoiled plums, rotten eggs and brine. Ugh, just the thought of having to eat that muck 
makes me want to throw up! Besides that, our potatoes have contracted such strange 
diseases that one out of every two buckets of pommes de terre winds up in the 
garbage. We entertain ourselves by trying to figure out which disease they've got, and 
we've reached the conclusion that they suffer from cancer, smallpox and measles. 
Honestly, being in hiding during the fourth year of the war is no picnic. If only the 
whole stinking mess were over! 

To tell you the truth, the food wouldn't matter so much to me if life here were more 
pleasant in other ways. But that's just it: this tedious existence is starting to make us 
all disagreeable. Here are the opinions of the five grown-ups on the present situation 
(children aren't allowed to have opinions, and for once I'm sticking to the rules): 

Mrs. van Daan: "I'd stopped wanting to be queen of the kitchen long ago. But sitting 
around doing nothing was boring, so I went back to cooking. Still, I can't help 
complaining: it's impossible to cook without oil, and all those disgusting smells make 
me sick to my stomach. Besides, what do I get in return for my efforts? Ingratitude 
and rude remarks. I'm always the black sheep: I get blamed for everything. What's 
more, it's my opinion that the war is making very little progress. The Germans will 
win in the end. I'm terrified that we're going to starve, and when I'm in a bad mood, I 
snap at everyone who comes near." 

Mr. van Daan: "I just smoke and smoke and smoke. Then the food, the political 

situation and Kerli's moods don't seem so bad. Kerb's a sweetheart. If I don't have 
anything to smoke, I get sick, then I need to eat meat, life becomes unbearable, 
nothing's good enough, and there's bound to be a flaming row. My Kerli's an idiot." 

Mrs. Frank: "Food's not very important, but I'd love a slice of rye bread right now, 
because I'm so hungry. If I were Mrs. van Daan, I'd have put a stop to Mr. van 
Daan's smoking long ago. But I desperately need a cigarette now, because my head's 
in such a whirl. The van Daans are horrible people! the English may make a lot of 
mistakes, but the war is progressing. I should keep my mouth shut and be grateful I'm 
not in Poland." 

Mr. Frank: "Everything's fine, I don't need a thing. Stay calm, we've got plenty of 
time. Just give me my potatoes, and I'll be quiet. Better set aside some of my rations 
for Bep. The political situation is improving, I'm extremely optimistic." 

Mr. Dussel: "I must complete the task I've set for myself, everything must be finished 
on time. The political situation is looking 'gut,' it's 'eempossible' for us to get caught. 
Me, me, me . . . ." 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Whew! Released from the gloom and doom for a few moments! All I've been hearing 
today is: "If this and that happens, we're in trouble, and if so-and-so gets sick, we'll 
be left to fend for ourselves, and if . . ." 

Well, you know the rest, or at any rate I assume you're famthar enough with the 
residents of the Annex to guess what they'd be talking about. 

The reason for all the "if s" is that Mr. Kugler has been called up for a six-day work 
detail, Bep is down with a bad cold and will probably have to stay home tomorrow, 
Miep hasn't gotten over her flu, and Mr. Kleiman's stom- ach bled so much he lost 
consciousness. What a tale of woe! 

We think Mr. Kugler should go directly to a reliable doctor for a medical certificate of 
ill health, which he can present to the City Hall in Hilversum. The warehouse — 
employees have been given a day off tomorrow, so Bep will be alone in the office. If 
(there's another "if') Bep has to stay home, the door will remain locked and we'll have 

to be as quiet as mice so the Keg Company won't hear us. At one o'clock Jan will 
come for half an hour to check on us poor forsaken souls, like a zookeeper. 

This afternoon, for the first time in ages, Jan gave us some news of the outside 
world. You should have seen us gathered around him; it looked exactly like a print: 
"At Grandmother's Knee." 

He regaled his grateful audience with talk of-what else?-food. Mrs. P., a friend of 
Miep's, has been cooking his meals. The day before yesterday Jan ate carrots with 
green peas, yesterday he had the leftovers, today she's cooking marrowfat peas, and 
tomorrow she's plan- ning to mash the remaining carrots with potatoes. 

We asked about Miep's doctor. 

"Doctor?" said Jan. "What doctor? I called him this morning and got his secretary on 
the line. I asked for a flu prescription and was told I could come pick it up tomor- 
row morning between eight and nine. If you've got a particularly bad case of flu, the 
doctor himself comes to the phone and says, 'Stick out your tongue and say "Aah." 
Oh, I can hear it, your throat's infected. I'll write out a prescription and you can bring 
it to the phar- macy. Good day.' And that's that. Easy job he's got, diagnosis by 
phone. But I shouldn't blame the doctors." After all, a person has only two hands, and 
these days there're too many patients and too few doctors." 

Still, we all had a good laugh at Jan's phone call. I can just imagine what a doctor's 
waiting room looks like these days. Doctors no longer turn up their noses at the 
poorer patients, but at those with minor illnesses. "Hey, what are you doing here?" 
they think. "Go to the end of the line; real patients have priority!" 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

The weather is gorgeous, indescribably beautiful; I'll be going up to the attic in a 

I now know why I'm so much more restless than Peter. He has his own room, where 
he can work, dream, think and sleep. I'm constantly being chased from one corner to 
another. I'm never alone in the room I share with Dussel, though I long to be so 
much. That's another reason I take refuge in the attic. When I'm there, or with you, I 

can be myself, at least for a little while. Still, I don't want to moan and groan. On the 
contrary, I want to be brave! 

Thank goodness the others notice nothing of my innermost feelings, except that every 
day I'm growing cooler and more contemptuous of Mother, less affection- ate to 
Father and less willing to share a single thought with Margot; I'm closed up tighter 
than a drum. Above all, I have to maintain my air of confidence. No one must know 
that my heart and mind are constantly at war with each other. Up to now reason has 
always won the battle, but will my emotions get the upper hand? Sometimes I fear 
they will, but more often I actually hope they do! 

Oh, it's so terribly hard not to talk to Peter about these things, but I know I have to 
let him begin; it's so hard to act during the daytime as if everything I've said and 
done in my dreams had never taken place! Kitty, Anne is crazy, but then these are 
crazy times and even crazier circumstances. 

The nicest part is being able to write down all my thoughts and feelings! otherwise, 
I'd absolutely suffocate. I wonder what Peter thinks about all these things? I keep 
thinking I'll be able to talk to him about them one day. He must have guessed 
something about the inner me, since he couldn't possibly love the outer Anne he's 
known so far! How could someone like Peter, who loves peace and quiet, possibly 
stand my bustle and noise? Will he be the first and only person to see what's beneath 
my granite mask? Will it take him long? Isn't there some old saying about love being 
akin to pity? Isn't that what's happening here as well? Because I often pity him as 
much as I do myself! 

I honestly don't know how to begin, I really don't, so how can I expect Peter to when 
talking is so much harder for him? If only I could write to him, then at least he'd 
know what I was trying to say, since it's so hard to say it out loud! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

FRIDAY, MARCH 17, 1944 

My dearest darling, 

Everything turned out all right after all; Bep just had a sore throat, not the flu, and 
Mr. Kugler got a medical certificate to excuse him from the work detail. The entire 
Annex breathed a huge sigh of relief. Everything's fine here! Except that Margot and I 
are rather tired of our parents. 

Don't get me wrong. I still love Father as much as ever and Margot loves both Father 
and Mother, but when you're as old as we are, you want to make a few decisions for 
yourself, get out from under their thumb. Whenever I go upstairs, they ask what I'm 

going to do, they won't let me salt my food, Mother asks me every evening at 

eight — fifteen if it isn't time for me to change into my nighty, I and they have to 

approve every book I read. I must admit, they're not at all strict about that and let 

me read nearly everything, but Margot and I are sick and tired of having to listen to 
their comments and questions all day long. 

There's something else that displeases them: I no longer feel like giving them little 
kisses morning, noon and night. All those cute nicknames seem so affected, and 
Father's fondness for talking about farting and going to the bathroom is disgusting. In 
short, I'd like nothing better than to do without their company for a while, and they 
don't understand that. Not that Margot and I have ever said any of this to them. What 
would be the point? They wouldn't understand anyway. 

Margot said last night, "What really bothers me is that if you happen to put your head 
in your hands and sigh once or twice, they immediately ask whether you have a 
headache or don't feel well." 

For both of us, it's been quite a blow to suddenly realize that very little remains of 
the close and harmoni- ous family we used to have at home! This is mostly because 
everything's out of kilter here. By that I mean that we're treated like children when it 
comes to external matters, while, inwardly, we're much older than other girls our age. 
Even though I'm only fourteen, I know what I want, I know who's right and who's 
wrong, I have my own opinions, ideas and principles, and though it may sound odd 
coming from a teenager, I feel I'm more of a person than a child — I feel I'm 
completely independent of others. I know I'm better at debating or carrying on a 
discussion than Mother, I know I'm more objective, I don't exaggerate as much, I'm 
much tidier and better with my hands, and because of that I feel (this may make you 
laugh) that I'm superior to her in many ways. To love someone, I have to admire and 
respect the person, but I feel neither respect nor admiration for Mother! 

Everything would be all right if only I had Peter, since I admire him in many ways. 
He's so decent and clever! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

I've told you more about myself and my feelings than I've ever told a living soul, so 
why shouldn't that include sex? 

Parents, and people in general, are very peculiar when it comes to sex. Instead of 
telling their sons and daughters everything at the age of twelve, they send the 
children out of the room the moment the subject arises and leave them to find out 
everything on their own. Later on, when parents notice that their children have, 
somehow, come by their information, they assume they know more (or less) than they 
actually do. So why don't they try to make amends by asking them what's what? 

A major stumbling block for the adults — though in my opinion it's no more than a 
pebble — is that they're afraid their children will no longer look upon marriage as 
sacred and pure once they realize that, in most cases, this purity is a lot of nonsense. 
As far as I'm concerned, it's not wrong for a man to bring a little experience to a 
marriage. After all, it has nothing to do with the marriage itself, does it? 

Soon after I turned eleven, they told me about menstruation. But even then, I had no 
idea where the blood came from or what it was for. When I was twelve and a half, I 
learned some more from Jacque, who wasn't as ignorant as I was. My own intuition 
told me what a man and a woman do when they're together; it seemed like a crazy 
idea at first, but when Jacque confirmed it, I was proud of myself for having figured it 

It was also Jacque who told me that children didn't come out of their mother's 
tummies. As she put it, "Where the ingredients go in is where the finished product 
comes out!" Jacque and I found out about the hymen, and quite a few other details, 
from a book on sex education. I also knew that you could keep from having children, 
but how that worked inside your body remained a mystery. When I came here, Father 
told me about prostitutes, etc., but all in all there are still unanswered questions. 

If mothers don't tell their children everything, they hear it in bits and pieces, and that 
can't be right. 

Even though it's Saturday, I'm not bored! That's because I've been up in the attic with 
Peter. I sat there dreaming with my eyes closed, and it was wonderful. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

SUNDAY, MARCH 19, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Yesterday was a very important day for me. After lunch everything was as usual. At 
five I put on the potatoes, and Mother gave me some blood sausage to take to Peter. 
I didn't want to at first, but I finally went. He wouldn't accept the sausage, and I had 
the dreadful feel- ing it was still because of that argument we'd had about distrust. 
Suddenly I couldn't bear it a moment longer and my eyes filled with tears. Without 
another word, I re- turned the platter to Mother and went to the bathroom to have a 
good cry. Afterward I decided to talk things out with Peter. Before dinner the four of 
us were helping him with a crossword puzzle, so I couldn't say anything. But as we 
were sitting down to eat, I whispered to him, "Are you going to practice your 
shorthand tonight, Peter?" 

"No," was his reply. 

"I'd like to talk to you later on." 

He agreed. 

After the dishes were done, I went to his room and asked if he'd refused the sausage 
because of our last quar- rel. Luckily, that wasn't the reason; he just thought it was 
bad manners to seem so eager. It had been very hot downstairs and my face was as 
red as a lobster. So after taking down some water for Margot, I went back up to get 
a little fresh air. For the sake of appearances, I first went and stood beside the van 
Daans' window before going to Peter's room. He was standing on the left side of the 
open window, so I went over to the right side. It's much easier to talk next to an 
open window in semidarkness than in broad daylight, and I think Peter felt the same 
way. We told each other so much, so very much, that I can't repeat it all. But it felt 
good; it was the most won- derful evening I've ever had in the Annex. I'll give you a 
brief description of the various subjects we touched on. 

First we talked about the quarrels and how I see them in a very different light these 
days, and then about how we've become alienated from our parents. I told Peter about 
Mother and Father and Margot and myself. At one point he asked, "You always give 
each other a good-night kiss, don't you?" 

"One? Dozens of them. You don't, do you?" 

"No, I've never really kissed anyone." 

'Not even on your birthday?" 

'Yeah, on my birthday I have. 

We talked about how neither of us really trusts our parents, and how his parents love 

each other a great deal and wish he'd confide in them, but that he doesn't want to. 

How I cry my heart out in bed and he goes up to the loft and swears. How Margot 

and I have only recently gotten to know each other and yet still tell each other very 

little, since we're always together. We talked about every imaginable thing, about 
trust, feelings and ourselves. Oh, Kitty, he was just as I thought he would be. 

Then we talked about the year 1942, and how different we were back then; we don't 
even recognize ourselves from that period. How we couldn't stand each other at first. 
He'd thought I was a noisy pest, and I'd quickly concluded that he was nothing special. 
I didn't understand why he didn't flirt with me, but now I'm glad. He also mentioned 
how he often used to retreat to his room. I said that my noise and exuberance and his 
silence were two sides of the same coin, and that I also liked peace and quiet but 
don't have anything for myself alone, except my diary, and that everyone would rather 
see the back of me, starting with Mr. Dussel, and that I don't always want to sit with 
my parents. We discussed how glad he is that my parents have children and how glad 
I am that he's here. 

How I now understand his need to withdraw and his relationship to his parents, and 
how much I'd like to help him when they argue. 

"But you're always a help to me!" he said. 

"How?" I asked, greatly surprised. 

"By being cheerful." 

That was the nicest thing he said all evening. He also told me that he didn't mind my 
coming to his room the way he used to; in fact, he liked it. I also told him that all of 
Father's and Mother's pet names were meaningless, that a kiss here and there didn't 
automatically lead to trust. We also talked about doing things your own way, the diary, 
loneliness, the difference between everyone's inner and outer selves, my mask, etc. 

It was wonderful. He must have come to love me as a friend, and, for the time being, 
that's enough. I'm so grateful and happy, I can't find the words. I must apolo- gize, 
Kitty, since my style is not up to my usual standard today. I've just written whatever 
came into my head! 

I have the feeling that Peter and I share a secret. Whenever he looks at me with 
those eyes, with that smile and that wink, it's as if a light goes on inside me. I hope 
things will stay like this and that we'll have many, many more happy hours together. 

Your grateful and happy Anne 

MONDAY, MARCH 20, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

This morning Peter asked me if I'd come again one evening. He swore I wouldn't be 
disturbing him, and said that where there was room for one, there was room for two. 
I said I couldn't see him every evening, since my parents didn't think it was a good 
idea, but he thought I shouldn't let that bother me. So I told him I'd like to come 
some Saturday evening and also asked him if he'd let me know when you could see 
the moon. 

"Sure," he said, "maybe we can go downstairs and look at the moon from there." I 
agreed; I'm not really so scared of burglars. 

In the meantime, a shadow has fallen on my happiness. For a long time I've had the 
feeling that Margot likes Peter. Just how much I don't know, but the whole situation is 
very unpleasant. Now every time I go see Peter I'm hurting her, without meaning to. 

The funny thing is that she hardly lets it show. I know I'd be insanely jealous, but 

Margot just says I shouldn't feel sorry for her. 

"I think it's so awful that you've become the odd one out," I added. 

"I'm used to that," she replied, somewhat bitterly. 

I don't dare tell Peter. Maybe later on, but he and I need to discuss so many other 
things first. 

Mother slapped me last night, which I deserved. I mustn't carry my indifference and 
contempt for her too far. In spite of everything, I should try once again to be friendly 
and keep my remarks to myself! 

Even Pirn isn't as nice as he used to be. He's been trying not to treat me like a child, 
but now he's much too cold. We'll just have to see what comes of it! He's warned me 
that if I don't do my algebra, I won't get any tutoring after the war. I could simply 

wait and see what happens, but I'd like to start again, provided I get a new book. 

That's enough for now. I do nothing but gaze at Peter, and I'm filled to overflowing! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

Evidence of Margot's goodness. I received this today, March 20, 1944: 

Anne, yesterday when I said I wasn't jeal- ous of you, I wasn't being entirely honest. 

The situation is this: I'm not jealous of either you or Peter. I'm just sorry I haven't 

found anyone willi whom to share my thoughts and feelings, and I'm not likely to in 
the near future. But that's why I wish, from the bottom of my heart, that you will 

both be able to place your trust in each other. You're already missing out on so much 

here, things other people take for granted. 

On the other hand, I'm certain I'd never have gotten as far with Peter, because I think 
I'd need to feel very close to a person before I could share my thoughts. I'd want to 
have the feeling that he understood me through and through, even if I didn't say much. 
For this reason it would have to be someone I felt was intellectually superior to me, 
and that isn't the case with Peter. But I can imagine your feeling close to him. 

So there's no need for you to reproach yourself because you think you' te taking 
something I was entitled to: nothing could be further from the truth. You and Peter 
have everything to gain by your friendship. 

My answer: 

Dearest Margot, 

Your letter was extremely kind, but I still don't feel completely happy about the 
situation, and I don't think I ever will. 

At the moment, Peter and I don't trust each other as much as you seem to think. It's 
just that when you're standing beside an open window at twthght, you can say more to 
each other than in bright sunshine. It's also easier to whisper your feelings than to 
shout them from the rooftops. I think you've begun to feel a kind of sisterly affection 
for Peter and would like to help him, just as much as I would. Perhaps you'll be able 
to do that someday, though that's not the kind of trust we have in mind. I believe that 
trust has to corne from both sides; I also think that's the reason why Father and I 
have never really grown so close. But let's not talk about it anymore. If there's 
anything you still want to discuss, please write, because it's easier for me to say what 
I mean as on paper than face-to-face. You know how le much I admire you, and only 

hope that some of your goodness and Father's goodness will rub off on me, because, 
in that sense, you two are a lot alike. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

I received this letter last night from Margot: 

Dear Anne, 

After your letter of yesterday I have the unpleasant feeling that your conscience 
bothers you whenever you go to Peter's to work or talk: there's really no reason for 
that. In my heart, I know there's someone who deserves t my trust (as I do his), and 
I wouldn't be able to tolerate Peter in his place. 

However, as you wrote, I do think of Peter as a kind of brother. . . a younger 
brother: we've been sending out feelers, and a brotherly and sisterly affection mayor 
may not develop at some later date, but it's certainly not reached that stage yet. So 
there's no need for you to feel sorry for me. Now that you've found companionship, 
enjoy it as much as you can. 

In the meantime, things are getting more and more wonderful here. I think, Kitty, that 
true love may be developing in the Annex. All those jokes about marrying Peter if we 
stayed here long enough weren't so silly after all. Not that I'm thinking of marrying 
him, mind you. I don't even know what he'll be like when he grows up. Or if we'll 
even love each other enough to get married. 

I'm sure now that Peter loves me tool I just don't know in what way. I can't figure 
out if he wants only a good friend, or if he's attracted to me as a girl or as a sister. 
When he said I always helped him when his parents were arguing, I was tremendously 
happy: it was one step toward making me believe in his friendship. I asked him 
yesterday what he'd do if there were a dozen Annes who kept popping in to see him. 
His answer was: "If they were all like you, it wouldn't be so bad." He's extremely 
hospitable, and I think he really likes to see me. Mean- while, he's been working hard 
at learning French, even studying in bed until ten- fifteen. 

Oh, when I think back to Saturday night, to our words, our voices, I feel satisfied with 
myself for the very first time! what I mean is, I'd still say the same and wouldn't 

want to change a thing, the way I usually do. He's so handsome, whether he's smthng 
or just sitting still. He's so sweet and good and beautiful. I think what surprised him 
most about me was when he discovered that I'm not at all the superficial, worldly 
Anne I appear to be, but a dreamer, like he is, with just as many troubles! 

Last night after the dinner dishes, I waited for him to ask me to stay upstairs. But 
nothing happened; I went away. He came downstairs to tell Dussel it was time to 
listen to the radio and hung around the bathroom for a while, but when Dussel took 
too long, he went back upstairs. He paced up and down his room and went to bed 

The entire evening I was so restless I kept going to the bathroom to splash cold 
water on my face. I read a bit, daydreamed some more, looked at the clock and 
waited, waited, waited, all the while listening to his foot- steps. I went to bed early, 

Tonight I have to take a bath, and tomorrow? 

Tomorrow's so far away! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
My answer: 

Dearest Margot, 

I think the best thing is simply to wait and see what happens. It can't be much longer 
before Peter and I will have to decide whether to go back to the way we were or do 
some- thing else. I don't know how it'll turn out; I can't see any farther than the end 
of my nose. 

But I'm certain of one thing: if Peter and I do become friends, I'm going to tell him 
you're also very fond of him and are prepared to help him if he needs you. You 
wouldn't want me to, I'm sure, but I don't care; I don't know what Peter thinks of 
you, but I'll ask him when the time comes. It's certainly nothing bad — on the 
contrary! You're welcome to join us in the attic, or wherever we are. You won't be 
disturbing us, because we have an unspoken agreement to talk only in the evenings 
when it's dark. 

Keep your spirits up! I'm doing my best, though it's not always easy. Your time may 
come sooner than you think. 

Yours, Anne 

Dearest Kitty, 

Things are more or less back to normal here. Our coupon men have been released 
from prison, thank goodness! 

Miep's been back since yesterday, but today it was her husband's turn to take to his 
bed-chills and fever, the usual flu symptoms. Bep is better, though she still has a 
cough, and Mr. Kleiman will have to stay home for a long time. 

Yesterday a plane crashed nearby. The crew was able to parachute out in time. It 
crashed on top of a school, but luckily there were no children inside. There was a 
small fire and a couple of people were killed. As the airmen made their descent, the 
Germans sprayed them with bullets. The Amsterdammers who saw it seethed with 
rage at such a dastardly deed. We-by which I mean the ladies-were also scared out 
of our wits. Brrr, I hate the sound of gunfire. 

Now about myself. 

I was with Peter yesterday and, somehow, I honestly don't know how, we wound up 
talking about sex. I'd made up my mind a long time ago to ask him a few things. He 
knows everything; when I said that Margot and I weren't very well informed, he was 
amazed. I told him a lot about Margot and me and Mother and Father and said that 

lately I didn't dare ask them anything. He offered to enlighten me, and I gratefully 

accepted: he described how contraceptives work, and I asked him very boldly how 
boys could tell they were grown up. He had to think about that one; he said he'd tell 

me tonight. I told him what had happened to Jacque, and said that girls are 

defenseless against strong boys. "Well, you don't have to be afraid of me," he said. 

When I came back that evening, he told me how it is with boys. Slightly embarrassing, 
but still awfully nice to be able to discuss it with him. Neither he nor I had ever 
imagined we'd be able to talk so openly to a girl or a boy, respectively, about such 
intimate matters. I think I know everything now. He told me a lot about what he 
called Prasentivmitteln* [* Should be Praservativmitteln: prophylactics] in German. 

That night in the bathroom Margot and I were talking about Bram and Trees, two 
friends of hers. 

This morning I was in for a nasty surprise: after breakfast Peter beckoned me 
upstairs. "That was a dirty trick you played on me," he said. "I heard what you and 
Margot were saying in the bathroom last night. I think you just wanted to find out 
how much Peter knew and then have a good laugh!" 

I was stunned! I did everything I could to talk him out of that outrageous idea; I 
could understand how he must have felt, but it just wasn't true! 

"Oh no, Peter," I said. "I'd never be so mean. I told you I wouldn't pass on anything 
you said to me and I won't. To put on an act like that and then deliberately be so 
mean. . . No, Peter, that's not my idea ofa joke. 

It wouldn't be fair. I didn't say anything, honest. Won't you believe me?" He assured 
me he did, but I think we'll have to talk about it again sometime. I've done nothing all 
day but worry about it. Thank goodness he came right out and said what was on his 
mind. Imagine if he'd gone around thinking I could be that mean. He's so sweet! 

Now I'll have to tell him everything! 

Yours, Anne 

FRIDAY, MARCH 24, 1944 
Dear Kitty, 

I often go up to Peter's room after dinner nowadays to breathe in the fresh evening 
air. You can get around to meaningful conversations more quickly in the dark than with 
the sun tickling your face. It's cozy and snug sitting beside him on a chair and looking 
outside. The van Daans and Dussel make the silliest remarks when I disappear into his 
room. "Annes zweite Heimat,"* [* Anne's second home] they say, or "Is it proper for 
a gentleman to receive young girls in his room at night with the lights out?" Peter has 
amazing presence of mind in the face of these so-called witticisms. My mother, 
incidentally, is also bursting with curiosity and simply dying to ask what we talk 
about, only she's secretly afraid I'd refuse to answer. Peter says the grown-ups are 
just jealous because we're young and that we shouldn't take their obnoxious comments 
to heart. 

Sometimes he comes downstairs to get me, but that's awkward too, because in spite 
of all his precautions his face turns bright red and he can hardly get the words out of 
his mouth. I'm glad I don't blush; it must be extremely unpleasant. 

Besides, it bothers me that Margot has to sit downstairs all by herself, while I'm 
upstairs enjoying Peter's company. But what can I do about it? I wouldn't mind it if 
she came, but she'd just be the odd one out, sitting there like a lump on a log. 

I've had to listen to countless remarks about our sudden friendship. I can't tell you 

how often the conversation at meals has been about an Annex wedding, should the war 

last another five years. Do we take any notice of this parental chitchat? Hardly, since 

it's all so silly. Have my parents forgotten that they were young once? Apparently 
they have. At any rate, they laugh at us when we're serious, and they're serious when 
we're joking. 

I don't know what's going to happen next, or whether we'll run out of things to say. 
But if it goes on like this, we'll eventually be able to be together without talking. If 
only his parents would stop acting so strangely. It's probably because they don't like 
seeing me so often; Peter and I certainly never tell them what we talk about. Imagine 
if they knew we were discussing such intimate things. 

I'd like to ask Peter whether he knows what girls look like down there. I don't think 

boys are as complicated as girls. You can easily see what boys look like in 

photographs or pictures of male nudes, but with women it's different. In women, the 
genitals, or whatever they're called, are hidden between their legs. Peter has probably 
never seen a girl up close. To tell you the truth, neither have I. Boys are a lot easier. 
How on earth would I go about describing a girl's parts? I can tell from what he said 
that he doesn't know exactly how it all fits together. He was talking about the 
"Muttermund," [* cervix], but that's on the inside, where you can't see it. Everything's 
pretty well arranged in us women. Until I was eleven or twelve, I didn't realize there 

was a second set of labia on the inside, since you couldn't see them. What's even 

funnier is that I thought urine came out of the clitoris. I asked Mother one time what 
that little bump was, and she said she didn't know. She can really play dumb when 
she wants to! 

But to get back to the subject. How on earth can you explain what it all looks like 
without any models? 

Shall I try anyway? Okay, here goes! 

When you're standing up, all you see from the front is hair. Between your legs there 
are two soft, cushiony things, also covered with hair, which press together when 
you're standing, so you can't see what's inside. They separate when you sit down, and 
they're very red and quite fleshy on the inside. In the upper part, between the outer 

labia, there's a fold of skin that, on second thought, looks like a kind of blister. That's 
the clitoris. Then come the inner labia, which are also pressed together in a kind of 
crease. When they open up, you can see a fleshy little mound, no bigger than the top 
of my thumb. The upper part has a couple of small holes in it, which is where the 
urine comes out. The lower part looks as if it were just skin, and yet that's where 
the vagina is. You can barely find it, because the folds of skin hide the opening. The 
hole's so small I can hardly imagine how a man could get in there, much less how a 
baby could come out. It's hard enough trying to get your index finger inside. That's all 
there is, and yet it plays such an important role! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

You never realize how much you've changed until after it's happened. I've changed 
quite drastically, everything about me is different: my opinions, ideas, critical outlook. 
Inwardly, outwardly, nothing's the same. And, I might safely add, since it's true, I've 
changed for the better. I once told you that, after years of being adored, it was hard 

for me to adjust to the harsh reality of grown-ups and rebukes. But Father and 

Mother are largely to blame for my having to put up with so much. At home they 
wanted me to enjoy life, which was fine, but here they shouldn't have encouraged me 
to agree with them and only shown me "their" side of all the quarrels and gossip. It 
was a long time before I discovered the score was fifty-fifty. I now know that many 
blunders have been committed here, by young and old alike. Father and Mother's 
biggest mistake in dealing with the van Daans is that they're never candid and friendly 

(admittedly, the friendliness might have to be feigned). Above all, I want to keep the 

peace, and to neither quarrel nor gossip. With Father and Margot that's not difficult, 
but it is with Mother, which is why I'm glad she gives me an occasional rap on the 
knuckles. You can win Mr. van Daan to your side by agreeing with him, listening 
quietly, not saying much and most of all . . . responding to his teasing and his corny 
jokes with a joke of your own. Mrs. van D. can be won over by talking openly to her 
and admitting when you're wrong. She also frankly admits her faults, of which she has 
many. I know all too well that she doesn't think as badly of me as she did in the 
beginning. And that's simply because I'm honest and tell people right to their faces 
what I think, even when it's not very flattering. I want to be honest; I think it gets 
you further and also makes you feel better about yourself. 

Yesterday Mrs. van D. was talking about the rice we gave Mr. Kleiman. "All we do is 
give, give, give. But at a certain point I think that enough is enough. If he'd only take 

the trouble, Mr. Kleiman could scrounge up his own rice. Why should we give away all 
our supplies? We need them just as badly." 

"No, Mrs. van Daan," I replied. "I don't agree with you. Mr. Kleiman may very well be 
able to get hold of a little rice, but he doesn't like having to worry about it. It's not 
our place to criticize the people who are helping us. We should give them whatever 
they need if we can possibly spare it. One less plate of rice a week won't make that 
much difference; we can always eat beans." 

Mrs. van D. didn't see it my way, but she added that, even though she disagreed, she 
was willing to back down, and that was an entirely different matter. 

Well, I've said enough. Sometimes I know what my place is and sometimes I have my 
doubts, but I'll eventually get where I want to be! I know I will! Especially now that I 
have help, since Peter helps me through many a rough patch and rainy day! 

I honestly don't know how much he loves me and whether we'll ever get as far as a 
kiss; in any case, I don't want to force the issue! I told Father I often go see Peter 
and asked if he approved, and of course he did! 

It's much easier now to tell Peter things I'd nor- mally keep to myself; for example, 
I told him I want to write later on, and if I can't be a writer, to write in addition to 
my work. 

I don't have much in the way of money or worldly possessions, I'm not beautiful, 
intelligent or clever, but I'm happy, and I intend to stay that way! I was born happy, I 
love people, I have a trusting nature, and I'd like everyone else to be happy too. 

Your devoted friend, Anne M. Frank 

An empty day, though clear and bright, 

Is just as dark as any night. 

(I wrote this a few weeks ago and it no longer holds true, but I included it because 
my poems are so few and far between.) 

MONDAY, MARCH 27, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

At least one long chapter on our life in hiding should be about politics, but I've been 

avoiding the subject, since it interests me so little. Today, however, I'll devote an 
entire letter to politics. 

Of course, there are many different opinions on this topic, and it's not surprising to 
hear it frequently discussed in times of war, but. . . arguing so much about politics is 
just plain stupid! Let them laugh, swear, make bets, grumble and do whatever they 
want as long as they stew in their own juice. But don't let them argue, since that only 
makes things worse. The people who come from outside bring us a lot of news that 
later proves to be untrue; however, up to now our radio has never lied. Jan, Miep, Mr. 
Kleiman, Bep and Mr. Kugler go up and down in their political moods, though Jan least 
of all. 

Here in the Annex the mood never varies. The end- less debates over the invasion, 
air raids, speeches, etc., etc., are accompanied by countless exclamations such as 
"Eempossible!, Urn Gottes Widen* [* Oh, for heaven's sake]. If they're just getting 
started now, how long is it going to last!, It's going splendidly, But, great!" 

Optimists and pessimists — not to mention the realists — air their opinions with 
unflagging energy, and as with everything else, they're all certain that they have a 
monopoly on the truth. It annoys a certain lady that her spouse has such supreme 
faith in the British, and a certain husband attacks his wife because of her teasing and 
dispar- aging remarks about his beloved nation! 

And so it goes from early in the morning to late at night; the funny part is that they 
never get tired of it. I've discovered a trick, and the effect is overwhelming, just like 
pricking someone with a pin and watching them jump. Here's how it works: I start 
talking about politics. 

All it takes is a single question, a word or a sentence, and before you know it, the 
entire family is involved! 

As if the German "Wehrmacht News" and the English BBC weren't enough, they've 
now added special air-raid announcements. In a word, splendid. But the other side of 
the coin is that the British Air Force is operating around the clock. Not unlike the 
German propaganda machine, which is cranking out lies twenty-four hours a day! 

So the radio is switched on every morning at eight (if not earlier) and is listened to 
every hour until nine, ten or even eleven at night. This is the best evidence yet that 
the adults have infinite patience, but also that their brains have turned to mush (some 
of them, I mean, since I wouldn't want to insult anyone). One broadcast, two at the 
most, should be enough to last the entire day. But no, those old nincompoops. . . 

never mind, I've already said it all! "Music While You Work," the Dutch broadcast 
from England, Frank Phillips or Queen Wilhelmina, they each get a turn and find a 
willing listener. If the adults aren't eating or sleeping, they're clustered around the 
radio talking about eating, sleeping and politics. Whew! It's getting to be a bore, and 
it's all I can do to keep from turning into a dreary old crone myself! Though with all 
the old folks around me, that might not be such a bad idea! 

Here's a shining example, a speech made by our beloved Winston Churchill. 

Nine o'clock, Sunday evening. The teapot, under its cozy, is on the table, and the 
guests enter the room. 

Dussel sits to the left of the radio, Mr. van D. in front of it and Peter to the side. 
Mother is next to Mr. van D., willi Mrs. van D. behind them. Margot and I are sitting 
in the last row and Pirn at the table. I realize this isn't a very clear description of our 
seating arrangements, but it doesn't matter. The men smoke, Peter's eyes close from 
the strain of listening, Mama is dressed in her long, dark negligee, Mrs. van D. is 
trembling because of the planes, which take no notice of the speech but fly blithely on 
toward Essen, Father is slurping his tea, and Margot and I are united in a sisterly way 
by the sleeping Mouschi, who has taken possession of both our knees. Margot's hair is 
in curlers and my nightgown is too small, too tight and too short. It all looks so 
intimate, cozy and peaceful, and for once it really is. Yet I await the end of the 
speech willi dread. They're impatient, straining at the leash to start another argument! 
Pst, pst, like a cat luring a mouse from its hole, they goad each other into quarrels 
and dissent. 

Yours, Anne 

TUESDAY, MARCH 28, 1944 
My dearest Kitty, 

As much as I'd like to write more on politics, I have lots of other news to report 
today. First, Mother has virtually forbidden me to go up to Peter's, since, according to 
her, Mrs. van Daan is jealous. Second, Peter's invited Margot to join us upstairs. 
Whether he really means it or is just saying it out of politeness, I don't know. Third, 
I asked Father if he thought I should take any notice of Mrs. van Daan's jealousy and 
he said I didn't have to. 

What should I do now? Mother's angry, doesn't want me going upstairs, wants me to 
go back to doing my homework in the room I share willi Dussel. She may be jealous 

herself. Father doesn't begrudge us those few hours and thinks it's nice we get along 
so well. Margot likes Peter too, but feels that three people can't talk about the same 
things as two. 

Furthermore, Mother thinks Peter's in love with me. To tell you the truth, I wish he 
were. Then we'd be even, and it'd be a lot easier to get to know each other. She also 
claims he's always looking at me. Well, I suppose we do give each other the 
occasional wink. But I can't help it if he keeps admiring my dimples, can I? 

I'm in a very difficult position. Mother's against me and I'm against her. Father turns a 
blind eye to the silent struggle between Mother and me. Mother is sad, because she 
still loves me, but I'm not at all unhappy, because she no longer means anything to 

As for Peter. . . I don't want to give him up. He's so sweet and I admire him so 
much. He and I could have a really beautiful relationship, so why are the old folks 
poking their noses into our business again? Fortu- nately, I'm used to hiding my 
feelings, so I manage not to show how crazy I am about him. Is he ever going to say 

anything? Am I ever going to feel his cheek against mine, the way I felt Petel's cheek 

in my dream? Oh, Peter and 

Petel, you're one and the same! They don't understand us; they'd never understand 
that we're content just to sit beside each other and not say a word. They have no 
idea of what draws us together! Oh, when will we overcome all these difficulties? And 
yet it's good that we have to surmount them, since it makes the end that much more 
beautiful. When he lays his head on his arms and closes his eyes, he's still a child; 

when he plays with Mouschi or talks about her, he's loving; when he carries the 

potatoes or other heavy loads, he's strong; when he goes to watch the gunfire or 
walks through the dark house to look for burglars, he's brave; and when he's so 
awkward and clumsy, he's hopelessly endearing. It's much nicer when he explains 
something to me than when I have to teach him. I wish he were superior to me in 
nearly every way! 

What do we care about our two mothers? Oh, if only he'd say something. 

Father always says I'm conceited, but I'm not, I'm merely vain! I haven't had many 
people tell me I was pretty, except for a boy at school who said I looked so cute 
when I smiled. Yesterday Peter paid me a true com- pliment, and just for fun I'll give 
you a rough idea of our conversation. 

Peter often says, "Smile!" I thought it was strange, so yesterday I asked him, "Why 

do you always want me to smile?" 

"Because you get dimples in your cheeks. How do you do that?" 

"I was born with them. There's also one in my chin. It's the only mark of beauty I 

"No, no, that's not true!" 

"Yes it is. I know I'm not beautiful. I never have been and I never will be!" 

"I don't agree. I think you're pretty." 

"I am not." 

"I say you are, and you'll have to take my word for it." So of course I then said the 
same about him. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

Mr. Bolkestein, the Cabinet Minister, speaking on the Dutch broadcast from London, 
said that after the war a collection would be made of diaries and letters dealing with 
the war. Of course, everyone pounced on my diary. Just imagine how interesting it 
would be if I were to publish a novel about the Secret Annex. The title alone would 
make people think it was a detective story. 

Seriously, though, ten years after the war people would find it very amusing to read 
how we lived, what we ate and what we talked about as Jews in hiding. Although I 
tell you a great deal about our lives, you still know very little about us. How 
frightened the women are during air raids; last Sunday, for instance, when 350 British 
planes dropped 550 tons of bombs on IJmuiden, so that the houses trembled like 
blades of grass in the wind. Or how many epidemics are raging here. 

You know nothing of these matters, and it would take me all day to describe 
everything down to the last detail. People have to stand in line to buy vegetables and 
all kinds of goods; doctors can't visit their patients, since their cars and bikes are 
stolen the moment they turn their backs; burglaries and thefts are so common that you 

ask yourself what's suddenly gotten into the Dutch to make them so light-fingered. 
Little children, eight- and eleven- year-olds, smash the windows of people's homes 
and steal whatever they can lay their hands on. People don't dare leave the house for 
even five minutes, since they're liable to come back and find all their belongings gone. 
Every day the newspapers are filled with reward notices for the return of stolen 
typewriters, Persian rugs, electric clocks, fabrics, etc. The electric clocks on street 
corners are dismantled, public phones are stripped down to the last wire. 

Morale among the Dutch can't be good. Everyone's hungry; except for the ersatz 
coffee, a week's food ration doesn't last two days. The invasion's long in coming, the 
men are being shipped off to Germany, the children are sick or undernourished, 
everyone's wearing worn-out clothes and run-down shoes. A new sole costs 7.50 
guil- ders on the black market. Besides, few shoemakers will do repairs, or if they 
do, you have to wait four months for your shoes, which might very well have 
disappeared in the meantime. 

One good thing has come out of this: as the food gets worse and the decrees more 
severe, the acts of sabo- tage against the authorities are increasing. The ration board, 
the police, the officials— they're all either helping their fellow citizens or denouncing 
them and sending them off to prison. Fortunately, only a small percentage of Dutch 
people are on the wrong side. 

Yours, Anne 

FRIDAY, MARCH 31, 1944 
Dearest Kitty, 

Just imagine, it's still fairly cold, and yet most people have been without coal for 
nearly a month. Sounds awful, doesn't it? There's a general mood of optimism about 
the Russian front, because that's going great guns! I don't often write about the 
political situation, but I must tell you where the Russians are at the moment. They've 
reached the Polish border and the Prut River in Romania. They're close to Odessa, and 
they've surrounded Ternopol. Every night we're expecting an extra communique from 

They're firing off so many salutes in Moscow, the city must be rumbling and shaking 
all day long. Whether they like to pretend the fighting's nearby or they simply don't 
have any other way to express their joy, I don't know! 

Hungary has been occupied by German troops. 

There are still a million Jews living there; they too are doomed. 

Nothing special is happening here. Today is Mr. van Daan's birthday. He received two 
packets of tobacco, one serving of coffee, which his wife had managed to save, lemon 
punch from Mr. Kugler, sardines from Miep, eau de cologne from us, lilacs, tulips and, 
last but not least, a cake with raspberry filling, slightly gluey because of the poor 
quality of the flour and the lack of butter, but deli- cious anyway. 

All that talk about Peter and me has died down a bit. He's coming to pick me up 
tonight. Pretty nice of him, don't you think, since he hates doing it! We're very good 
friends. We spend a lot of time together and talk about every imaginable subject. It's 
so nice not having to hold back when we come to a delicate topic, the way I would 
with other boys. For example, we were talking about blood and somehow the 
conversation turned to menstruation, etc. He thinks we women are quite tough to be 
able to withstand the loss of blood, and that I am too. I wonder why? 

My life here has gotten better, much better. God has not forsaken me, and He never 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
My dearest Kitty, 

And yet everything is still so difficult. You do know what I mean, don't you? I long so 
much for him to kiss me, but that kiss is taking its own sweet time. Does he still 
think of me as a friend? Don't I mean anything more? 

You and I both know that I'm strong, that I can carry most burdens alone. I've never 
been used to sharing my worries with anyone, and I've never clung to a mother, but 
I'd love to lay my head on his shoulder and just sit there quietly. 

I can't, I simply can't forget that dream of Peter's cheek, when everything was so 
good! Does he have the same longing? Is he just too shy to say he loves me? Why 
does he want me near him so much? Oh, why doesn't he say something? 

I've got to stop, I've got to be calm. I'll try to be strong again, and if I'm patient, the 
rest will follow. But — and this is the worst part — I seem to be chasing him. I'm 
always the one who has to go upstairs; he never comes to me. But that's because of 

the rooms, and he understands why I object. Oh, I'm sure he understands more than I 
think . 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
MONDAY, APRIL 3, 1944 
My dearest Kitty, 

Contrary to my usual practice, I'm going to write you a detailed description of the 
food situation, since it's become a matter of some difficulty and importance, not only 
here in the Annex, but in all of Holland, all of Europe and even beyond. 

In the twenty-one months we've lived here, we've been through a good many "food 
cycles" — you'll understand what that means in a moment. A "food cycle" is a period 
in which we have only one particular dish or type of vegetable to eat. For a long time 
we ate nothing but endive. Endive with sand, endive without sand, endive with mashed 
potatoes, endive -and- mashed potato casserole. Then it was spinach, followed by 
kohlrabi, salsify, cucumbers, tomatoes, sauerkraut, etc., etc. 

It's not much fun when you have to eat, say, sauer- kraut every day for lunch and 
dinner, but when you're hungry enough, you do a lot of things. Now, however, we're 
going through the most delightful period so far, because there are no vegetables at all. 

Our weekly lunch menu consists of brown beans, split-pea soup, potatoes with 
dumplings, potato kugel and, by the grace of God, turnip greens or rotten carrots, and 
then it's back to brown beans. Because of the bread shortage, we eat potatoes at 
every meal, starting with breakfast, but then we fry them a little. To make soup we 
use brown beans, navy beans, potatoes, packages of vege- table soup, packages of 
chicken soup and packages of bean soup. There are brown beans in everything, 
including the bread. For dinner we always have potatoes with imitation gravy and — 
thank goodness we've still got it — beet salad. I must tell you about the dumplings. 
We make them with government-issue flour, water and yeast. They're so gluey and 
tough that it feels as if you had rocks in your stomach, but oh well! 

The high point is our weekly slice of liverwurst, and the jam on our unbuttered bread. 
But we're still alive, and much of the time it still tastes good too! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


My dearest Kitty, 

For a long time now I didn't know why I was bothering to do any schoolwork. The 
end of the war still seemed so far away, so unreal, like a fairy tale. If the war isn't 
over by September, I won't go back to school, since I don't want to be two years 

Peter filled my days, nothing but Peter, dreams and thoughts until Saturday night, 
when I felt so utterly miserable! oh, it was awful. I held back my tears when I was 
with Peter, laughed uproariously with the van Daans as we drank lemon punch and was 
cheerful and excited, but the minute I was alone I knew I was going to cry my eyes 
out. I slid to the floor in my nightgown and began by saying my prayers, very 
fervently. Then I drew my knees to my chest, lay my head on my arms and cried, all 
huddled up on the bare floor. A loud sob brought me back down to earth, and I choked 
back my tears, since I didn't want anyone next door to hear me. Then I tried to pull 
myself together, saying over and over, "I must, I must, I must. . . " Stiff from sitting 
in such an unusual position, I fell back against the side of the bed and kept up my 
struggle until just before ten-thirty, when I climbed back into bed. It was over! 

And now it's really over. I finally realized that I must do my schoolwork to keep from 
being ignorant, to get on in life, to become a journalist, because that's what I want! I 
know I can write. A few of my stories are good, my descriptions of the Secret Annex 
are humorous, much of my diary is vivid and alive, but. . . it remains to be seen 
whether I really have talent. 

"Eva's Dream" is my best fairy tale, and the odd thing is that I don't have the faintest 

idea where it came from. Parts of "Cady's Life" are also good, but as a whole it's 

nothing special. I'm my best and harshest critic. I know what's good and what isn't. 
Unless you write yourself, you can't know how wonderful it is! I always used to 
bemoan the fact that I couldn't draw, but now I'm overjoyed that at least I can write. 
And if I don't have the talent to write books or newspaper articles, I can always write 
for myself. But I want to achieve more than that. I can't imagine having to live like 
Mother, Mrs. van Daan and all the women who go about their work and are then 

forgotten. I need to have something besides a husband and children to devote myself 

to! I don't want to have lived in vain like most people. I want to be useful or bring 
enjoyment to all people, even those I've never met. I want to go on living even after 
my death! And that's why I'm so grateful to God for having given me this gift, which 
I can use to develop myself and to express all that's inside me! 

When I write I can shake off all my cares. My sor- row disappears, my spirits are 

revived! But, and that's a big question, will I ever be able to write something great, 
will I ever become a journalist or a writer? 

I hope so, oh, I hope so very much, because writing allows me to record everything, 
all my thoughts, ideals and fantasies. 

I haven't worked on "Cady's Life" for ages. In my mind I've worked out exactly what 
happens next, but the story doesn't seem to be coming along very well. I might never 
finish it, and it'll wind up in the wastepaper basket or the stove. That's a horrible 
thought, but then I say to myself, "At the age of fourteen and with so little 
experience, you can't write about philosophy." 

So onward and upward, with renewed spirits. It'll all work out, because I'm determined 
to write! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
Dearest Kitty, 

You asked me what my hobbies and interests are and I'd like to answer, but I'd better 
warn you, I have lots of them, so don't be surprised. 

First of all: writing, but I don't really think of that as a hobby. 

Number two: genealogical charts. I'm looking in every newspaper, book and document I 
can find for the family trees of the French, German, Spanish, English, Austrian, 
Russian, Norwegian and Dutch royal famthes. I've made great progress with many of 
them, because for ! a long time I've been taking notes while reading biogra- I, phies 
or history books. I even copy out many of the passages on history. 

So my third hobby is history, and Father's already bought me numerous books. I can 
hardly wait for the day when I'll be able to go to the public library and ferret out Iii 
the information I need. 

Number four is Greek and Roman mythology. I have various books on this subject too. 
I can name the nine Muses and the seven loves of Zeus. I have the wives of 
Hercules, etc., etc., down pat. 

My other hobbies are movie stars and family photographs. I'm crazy about reading and 

books. I adore the history of the arts, especially when it concerns writers, poets and 
painters; musicians may come later. I loathe algebra, geometry and arithmetic. I enjoy 
all my other school subjects, but history's my favorite! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

TUESDAY, APRIL 11, 1944 

My dearest Kitty, 

My head's in a whirl, I really don't know where to begin. Thursday (the last time I 
wrote you) everything was as usual. Friday afternoon (Good Friday) we played 
Monopoly; Saturday afternoon too. The days passed very quickly. Around two o'clock 
on Saturday, heavy firing ii began-machine guns, according to the men. For the rest, 
everything was quiet. 

Sunday afternoon Peter came to see me at four- thirty, at my invitation. At 
five-fifteen we went to the Ii front attic, where we stayed until six. There was a 

beautil ful Mozart concert on the radio from six to seven-fifteen; I especially enjoyed 

the Kleine Nachtmusik. I can hardly bear to listen in the kitchen, since beautiful music 
stirs me to the very depths of my soul. Sunday evening Peter couldn't take his balli, 
because the washtub was down in the office kitchen, filled with laundry. The two of 
us went to the front attic together, and in order to be able to sit comfortably, I took 
along the only cushion I could find in my room. We seated ourselves on a packing 
crate. Since both the crate and the cushion were very narrow, we were sitting quite 
close, leaning against two other crates; Mouschi kept us company, so we weren't 
without a chaperon. Suddenly, at a quarter to nine, Mr. van Daan whistled and asked if 
we had Mr. Dussel's cushion. We jumped up and went downstairs willi the cushion, the 
cat and Mr. van Daan. This cushion was the source of much misery. Dussel was angry 

because I'd taken the one he uses as a pillow, and he was afraid it might be covered 

with fleas; he had the entire house in an uproar because of this one cushion. In 
revenge, Peter and I stuck two hard brushes in his bed, but had to take them out 
again when Dussel unexpectedly decided to go sit in his room. We had a really good 
laugh at this little intermezzo. 

But our fun was short-lived. At nine— thirty Peter knocked gently on the door and 
asked Father to come upstairs and help him with a difficult English sentence. 

"That sounds fishy," I said to Margot. "It's obviously a pretext. You can tell by the 
way the men are talking that there's been a break-in!" I was right. The warehouse 
was being broken into at that very moment. Father, Mr. van Daan and Peter were 

downstairs in a flash. Margot, Mother, Mrs. van D. and I waited. Four frightened 
women need to talk, so that's what we did until we heard a bang downstairs. After 
that all was quiet. The clock struck quarter to ten. The color had drained from our 
faces, but we remained calm, even though we were afraid. Where were the men? What 
was that bang? Were they fighting with the burglars? We were too scared to think; all 
we could do was wait. 

Ten o'clock, footsteps on the stairs. Father, pale and nervous, came inside, followed 
by Mr. van Daan. "Lights out, tiptoe upstairs, we're expecting the police!" There 
wasn't time to be scared. The lights were switched off, I grabbed a jacket, and we sat 
down upstairs. 

"What happened? Tell us quickly!" 

There was no one to tell us; the men had gone back downstairs. The four of them 
didn't come back up until ten past ten. Two of them kept watch at Peter's open 
window. The door to the landing was locked, the book- case shut. We draped a 
sweater over our night-light, and then they told us what had happened: 

Peter was on the landing when he heard two loud bangs. He went downstairs and saw 
that a large panel was missing from the left half of the warehouse door. He dashed 
upstairs, alerted the "Home Guard," and the four of them went downstairs. When they 
entered the warehouse, the burglars were going about their business. Without thinking, 
Mr. van Daan yelled "Police!" Hur- ried footsteps outside; the burglars had fled. The 
board was put back in the door so the police wouldn't notice the gap, but then a swift 
kick from outside sent it flying to the floor. The men were amazed at the burglars' 
audacity. Both Peter and Mr. van Daan felt a murderous rage come over them. Mr. van 
Daan slammed an ax against the floor, and all was quiet again. Once more the panel 
was re- placed, and once more the attempt was foiled. Outside, a man and a woman 
shone a glaring flashlight through the opening, lighting up the entire warehouse. "What 
the ..." mumbled one of the men, but now their roles had been reversed. Instead of 
policemen, they were now burglars. All four of them raced upstairs. Dussel and Mr. 
van Daan snatched up Dussel's books, Peter opened the doors and windows in the 
kitchen and private office, hurled the phone to the ground, and the four of them finally 
ended up behind the bookcase. 


In all probability the man and woman with the flashlight had alerted the police. It was 
Sunday night, Easter Sunday. The next day, Easter Monday, the office was going to 
be closed, which meant we wouldn't be able to move around until Tuesday morning. 

Think of it, having to sit in such terror for a day and two nights! We thought of 
nothing, but simply sat there in pitch darkness — in her fear, Mrs. van D. had 
switched off the lamp. We whispered, and every time we heard a creak, someone said, 
"Shh, shh." 

It was ten-thirty, then eleven. Not a sound. Father and Mr. van Daan took turns 
coming upstairs to us. Then, at eleven-fifteen, a noise below. Up above you could 
hear the whole family breathing. For the rest, no one moved a muscle. Footsteps in 
the house, the private office, the kitchen, then. . . on the staircase. All sounds of 
breathing stopped, eight hearts pounded. Foot- steps on the stairs, then a rattling at 
the bookcase. This moment is indescribable. 

"Now we're done for," I said, and I had visions of all fifteen of us being dragged away 
by the Gestapo that very night. 

More rattling at the bookcase, twice. Then we heard a can fall, and the footsteps 
receded. We were out of danger, so far! A shiver went though everyone's body, I 
heard several sets of teeth chattering, no one said a word. We stayed like this until 
eleven— thirty. 

There were no more sounds in the house, but a light was shining on our landing, right 
in front of the bookcase. Was that because the police thought it looked so suspicious 
or because they simply forgot? Was anyone going to come back and turn it off? We 
found our tongues again. 

There were no longer any people inside the building, but perhaps someone was 
standing guard outside. We then did three things: tried to guess what was going on, 
trembled with fear and went to the bathroom. Since the buckets were in the attic, all 
we had was Peter's metal wastepaper basket. Mr. van Daan went first, then Father, 
but Mother was too embarrassed. Father brought the waste- basket to the next room, 
where Margot, Mrs. van Daan and I gratefully made use of it. Mother finally gave in. 
There was a great demand for paper, and luckily I had some in my pocket. 

The wastebasket stank, everything went on in a whisper, and we were exhausted. It 
was midnight. 

"Lie down on the floor and go to sleep!" Margot and I were each given a pillow and a 
blanket. Margot lay down near the food cupboard, and I made my bed between the 
table legs. The smell wasn't quite so bad when you were lying on the floor, but Mrs. 
van Daan quietly went and got some powdered bleach and draped a dish towel over 
the potty as a further precaution. 

Talk, whispers, fear, stench, farting and people continually going to the bathroom; try 
sleeping through that! By two-thirty, however, I was so tired I dozed off and didn't 
hear a thing until three — thirty. I woke up when Mrs. van D. lay her head on my feet. 

"For heaven's sake, give me something to put on!" I said. I was handed some clothes, 
but don't ask what: a pair of wool slacks over my pajamas, a red sweater and a black 
skirt, white understockings and tattered kneesocks. 

Mrs. van D. sat back down on the chair, and Mr. van D. lay down with his head on 
my feet. From three- thirty onward I was engrossed in thought, and still shiver- ing 
so much that Mr. van Daan couldn't sleep. I was preparing myself for the return of 
the police. We'd tell them we were in hiding; if they were good people, we'd be safe, 
and if they were Nazi sympathizers, we could try to bribe them! 

"We should hide the radio!" moaned Mrs. van D. 

"Sure, in the stove," answered Mr. van D. "If they find us, they might as well find the 

"Then they'll also find Anne's diary," added Father. 

"So burn it," suggested the most terrified of the group. 

This and the police rattling on the bookcase were the moments when I was most 
afraid. Oh, not my diary; if my diary goes, I go too! Thank goodness Father didn't say 
anything more. 

There's no point in recounting all the conversations; so much was said. I comforted 
Mrs. van Daan, who was very frightened. We talked about escaping, being interrogated 
by the Gestapo, phoning Mr. Kleiman and being courageous. 

"We must behave like soldiers, Mrs. van Daan. If our time has come, well then, it'll be 
for Queen and Country, for freedom, truth and justice, as they're always telling us on 
the radio. The only bad thing is that we'll drag the others down with us!" 

After an hour Mr. van Daan switched places with his wife again, and Father came and 
sat beside me. The men smoked one cigarette after another, an occasional sigh was 
heard, somebody made another trip to the potty, and then everything began allover 


Four o'clock, five, five-thirty. I went and sat with Peter by his window and listened, 
so close we could feel each other's bodies trembling; we spoke a word or two from 
time to time and listened intently. Next door they took down the blackout screen. 
They made a list of everything they were planning to tell Mr. Kleiman over the phone, 
because they intended to call him at seven and ask him to send someone over. They 
were taking a big chance, since the police guard at the door or in the warehouse 
might hear them calling, but there was an even greater risk that the police would 

I'm enclosing their list, but for the sake of clarity, I'll copy it here. 

Buralary: Police in building, up to bookcase, but no farther. Burglars apparently 
interrupted, forced warehouse door, fled through garden. Main entrance bolted; Kugler 
must have left through second door. 

Typewriter and adding machine safe in black chest in private office. 

Miep's or Bep's laundry in washtub in kitchen. 

Only Bep or Kugler have key to second door; lock may be broken. 

Try to warn jan and get key, look around office; also feed cat. 

For the rest, everything went according to plan. Mr. Kleiman was phoned, the poles 
were removed from the doors, the typewriter was put back in the chest. Then we all 
sat around the table again and waited for either jan or the police. 

Peter had dropped off to sleep and Mr. van Daan ANNE FRANK and I were lying on 
the floor when we heard loud footsteps below. I got up quietly. "It's Jan!" 

"No, no, it's the police!" they all said. 

There was a knocking at our bookcase. Miep whis- tied. This was too much for Mrs. 
van Daan, who sank limply in her chair, white as a sheet. If the tension had lasted 
another minute, she would have fainted. 

Jan and Miep came in and were met with a delightful scene. The table alone would 
have been worth a photograph: a copy of Cinema Theater, opened to a page of 
dancing girls and smeared with jam and pectin, which we'd been taking to combat the 
diarrhea, two jam jars, half a bread roll, a quarter of a bread roll, pectin, a mirror, a 
comb, matches, ashes, cigarettes, tobacco, an ashtray, books, a pair of underpants, a 

flashlight, Mrs. van Daan's comb, toilet paper, etc. 

Jan and Miep were of course greeted with shouts and tears. Jan nailed a pinewood 
board over the gap in the door and went off again with Miep to inform the police of 
the break-in. Miep had also found a note under the ware- house door from Sleegers, 
the night watchman, who had noticed the hole and alerted the police. Jan was also 
planning to see Sleegers. 

So we had half an hour in which to put the house and ourselves to rights. I've never 
seen such a transformation as in those thirty minutes. Margot and I got the beds 
ready downstairs, went to the bathroom, brushed our teeth, washed our hands and 
combed our hair. Then I straightened up the room a bit and went back upstairs. The 
table had already been cleared, so we got some water, made coffee and tea, boiled the 
milk and set the table. Father and Peter emptied our improvised potties and rinsed 
them with warm water and powdered bleach. The largest one was filled to the brim 
and was so heavy they had a hard time lifting it. To make things worse, it was 
leaking, so they had to put it in a bucket. 

At eleven o'clock Jan was back and joined us at the table, and gradually everyone 
began to relax. Jan had the following story to tell: 

Mr. Sleegers was asleep, but his wife told Jan that her husband had discovered the 
hole in the door while making his rounds. He called in a policeman, and the two of 
them searched the building. Mr. Sleegers, in his capacity as night watchman, patrols 
the area every night on his bike, accompanied by his two dogs. His wife said he would 
come on Tuesday and tell Mr. Kugler the rest. No one at the police station seemed to 

know anything about the break-in, but they made a note to come first thing Tuesday 

morning to have a look. 

On the way back Jan happened to run into Mr. van Hoeven, the man who supplies us 
with potatoes, and told him of the break— in. "I know," Mr. van Hoeven calmly replied. 
"Last night when my wife and I were walking past your building, I saw a gap in the 

door. My wife wanted to walk on, but I peeked inside with a flashlight, and that's 

when the burglars must have run off. To be on the safe side, I didn't call the police. I 
thought it wouldn't be wise in your case. I don't know anything, but I have my 
suspicions." Jan thanked him and went on. Mr. van Hoeven obviously suspects we're 
here, because he always delivers the potatoes at lunchtime. A decent man! 

It was one o'clock by the time Jan left and we'd done the dishes. All eight of us went 
to bed. I woke up at quarter to three and saw that Mr. Dussel was already up. My 
face rumpled with sleep, I happened to run into Peter in the bathroom, just after he'd 

come downstairs. We agreed to meet in the office. I freshened up a bit and went 

"After all this, do you still dare go to the front attic?" he asked. I nodded, grabbed 
my pillow, with a cloth wrapped around it, and we went up together. The weather was 
gorgeous, and even though the air-raid sirens soon began to wail, we stayed where 
we were. Peter put his arm around my shoulder, I put mine around his, and we sat 
quietly like this until four o'clock, when Margot came to get us for coffee. 

We ate our bread, drank our lemonade and joked (we were finally able to again), and 
for the rest everything was back to normal. That evening I thanked Peter because he'd 
been the bravest of us all. 

None of us have ever been in such danger as we were that night. God was truly 
watching over us. Just think-the police were right at the bookcase, the light was on, 
and still no one had discovered our hiding place! "Now we're done for!" I'd whispered 
at that moment, but once again we were spared. When the invasion comes and the 
bombs start falling, it'll be every man for himself, but this time we feared for those 
good, innocent Christians who are helping us. 

"We've been saved, keep on saving us!" That's all we can say. 

This incident has brought about a whole lot of changes. As of now, Dussel will be 
doing his work in the bathroom, and Peter will be patrolling the house between 
eight-thirty and nine-thirty. Peter isn't allowed to open his window anymore, since 
one of the Keg people noticed it was open. We can no longer flush the toilet after 
nine-thirty at night. Mr. Sleegers has been hired as night watchman, and tonight a 
carpenter from the underground is coming to make a barricade out of our white 
Frankfurt bedsteads. Debates are going on left and right in the Annex. Mr. Kugler has 
reproached us for our carelessness. Jan also said we should never go downstairs. What 
we have to do now is find out whether Sleegers can be trusted, whether the dogs will 
bark if they hear someone behind the door, how to make the barricade, all sorts of 

We've been strongly reminded of the fact that we're Jews in chains, chained to one 
spot, without any rights, but with a thousand obligations. We must put our feelings 
aside; we must be brave and strong, bear discomfort with- out complaint, do whatever 
is in our power and trust in God. One day this terrible war will be over. The time will 
come when we'll be people again and not just Jews! 

Who has inflicted this on us? Who has set us apart from all the rest? Who has put us 

through such suffering? It's God who has made us the way we are, but it's also God 
who will lift us up again. In the eyes of the world, we're doomed, but if, after all this 
suffering, there are still Jews left, the Jewish people will be held up as an example. 
Who knows, maybe our religion will teach the world and all the people in it about 
goodness, and that's the reason, the only reason, we have to suffer. We can never be 
just Dutch, or just English, or whatever, we will always be Jews as well. And we'll 
have to keep on being Jews, but then, we'll want to be. 

Be brave! Let's remember our duty and perform it without complaint. There will be a 
way out. God has never deserted our people. Through the ages Jews have had to 
suffer, but through the ages they've gone on living, and the centuries of suffering have 
only made them stronger. The weak shall fall and the strong shall survive and not be 

That night I really thought I was going to die. I waited for the police and I was ready 
for death, like a soldier on a battlefield. I'd gladly have given my life for my country. 
But now, now that I've been spared, my first wish after the war is to become a Dutch 
citizen. I love the Dutch, I love this country, I love the language, and I want to work 
here. And even if I have to write to the Queen herself, I won't give up until I've 
reached my goal! 

I'm becoming more and more independent of my parents. Young as I am, I face life 
with more courage and have a better and truer sense of justice than Mother. I know 
what I want, I have a goal, I have opinions, a religion and love. If only I can be 
myself, I'll be satisfied. I know that I'm a woman, a woman with inner strength and a 
great deal of courage! 

If God lets me live, I'll achieve more than Mother ever did, I'll make my voice heard, 
I'll go out into the world and work for mankind! 

I now know that courage and happiness are needed first! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

FRIDAY, APRIL 14, 1944 

Dear Kitty, 

Everyone here is still very tense. Pirn has nearly reached the bothng point; Mrs. van 
D. is lying in bed with a cold, grumbling; Mr. van D. is growing pale without his 
cigarettes; Dussel, who's having to give up many of his comforts, is carping at 

everyone; etc., etc. We seem to have run out of luck lately. The toilet's leaking, and 
the faucet's stuck. Thanks to our many connections, we'll soon be able to get these 

I'm occasionally sentimental, as you know, but from time to time I have reason to be: 
when Peter and I are sitting close together on a hard wooden crate among the junk 

and dust, our arms around each other's shoulders, Peter toying with a lock of my hair; 

when the birds outside are trilling their songs, when the trees are in bud, when the 
sun beckons and the sky is so blue — oh, that's when I wish for so much! 

All I see around me are dissatisfied and grumpy faces, all I hear are sighs and stifled 

complaints. You'd think our lives had taken a sudden turn for the worse. Honestly, 
things are only as bad as you make them. Here in the Annex no one even bothers to 

set a good example. We each have to figure out how to get the better of our own 


Every day you hear, "If only it were all over!" 

Work, love, courage and hope, 

Make me good and help me cope! 

I really believe, Kit, that I'm a little nutty today, and I don't know why. My writing's 
all mixed up, I'm jump— ing from one thing to another, and sometimes I seriously 
doubt whether anyone will ever be interested in this drivel. They'll probably call it 

"The Musings of an Ugly Duckling." My diaries certainly won't be of much use to Mr. 

Bolkestein or Mr. Gerbrandy.* [* Gerrit Bolkestein was the Minister of Education and 
Pieter Gerbrandy was the Prime Minister of the Dutch government in exile in London. 
See Anne's letter of March 29, 1944.] 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

"There's just one bad thing after another. When will it all end?" You can sure say that 
again. Guess what's happened now? Peter forgot to unbolt the front door. As a result, 
Mr. Kugler and the warehouse employees couldn't get in. He went to Keg's, smashed 
in our office kitchen window and got in that way. The windows in the Annex were 
open, and the Keg people saw that too. What must they be thinking? And van Maaren? 
Mr. Kugler's furious. We accuse him of not doing anything to reinforce the doors, and 

then we do a stupid thing like this! Peter's extremely upset. At the table, Mother said 
she felt more sorry for Peter than for anyone else, and he nearly began to cry. We're 
equally to blame, since we usually ask him every day if he's unbolted the door, and so 

does Mr. van Daan. Maybe I can go comfort him later on. I want to help him so 


Here are the latest news bulletins about life in the Secret Annex over the last few 

A week ago Saturday, Boche suddenly got sick. He sat quite still and started drooling. 
Miep immediately picked him up, rolled him in a towel, tucked him in her shopping bag 
and brought him to the dog-and-cat clinic. Boche had some kind of intestinal problem, 
so the vet gave him medicine. Peter gave it to him a few times, but Boche soon made 
himself scarce. I'll bet he was out courting his sweetheart. But now his nose is 
swollen and he meows whenever you pick him up -he was probably trying to steal 
food and somebody smacked him. Mouschi lost her voice for a few days. Just when 
we decided she had to be taken to the vet too, she started getting better. 

We now leave the attic window open a crack every night. Peter and I often sit up 

there in the evening. 

Thanks to rubber cement and oil paint, our toilet ; could quickly be repaired. The 
broken faucet has been replaced. 

Luckily, Mr. Kleiman is feeling better. He's going to see a specialist soon. We can 
only hope he won't need an operation. 

This month we received eight Tation books. Unfortunately, for the next two weeks 
beans have been substituted for oatmeal or groats. Our latest delicacy is piccalilli. If 
you're out of luck, all you get is a jar full of cucumber and mustard sauce. 

Vegetables are hard to come by. There's only lettuce, lettuce and more lettuce. Our 
meals consist entirely of potatoes and imitation gravy. 

The Russians are in possession of more than half the Crimea. The British aren't 
advancing beyond Cassino. We'll have to count on the Western Wall. There have been 
a lot of unbelievably heavy air raids. The Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages in 
The Hague was bombed. All Dutch people will be issued new ration registration cards. 

Enough for today. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

SUNDAY, APRIL 16, 1944 
My dearest Kitty, 

Remember yesterday's date, since it was a red-letter day for me. Isn't it an important 
day for every girl when she gets her first kiss? Well then, it's no less important to 
me. The time Bram kissed me on my right cheek or Mr. Woudstra on my right hand 
doesn't count. How did I suddenly come by this kiss? I'll tell you. 

Last night at eight I was sitting with Peter on his divan and it wasn't long before he 
put an arm around me. (Since it was Saturday, he wasn't wearing his overalls.) "Why 
don t we move over a little," I said, "so won t keep bumping my head against the 

He moved so far over he was practically in the corner. I slipped my arm under his 
and across his back, and he put his arm around my shoulder, so that I was nearly 
engulfed by him. We've sat like this on other occasions, but never so close as we 
were last night. He held me firmly against him, my left side against his chest; my 
heart had already begun to beat faster, but there was more to come. He wasn't 
satisfied until my head lay on his shoulder, with his on top of mine. I sat up again 
after about five minutes, but before long he took my head in his hands and put it back 
next to his. Oh, it was so wonderful. I could hardly talk, my pleasure was too intense; 
he caressed my cheek and arm, a bit clumsily, and played with my hair. Most of the 
time our heads were touching. 

I can't tell you, Kitty, the feeling that ran through me. I was too happy for words, and 
I think he was too. 

At nine-thirty we stood up. Peter put on his tennis shoes so he wouldn't make much 
noise on his nightly round of the building, and I was standing next to him. How I 
suddenly made the right movement, I don't know, but before we went downstairs, he 
gave me a. kiss, through my hair, half on my left cheek and half on my ear. I tore 
downstairs without looking back, and I long so much for today. 

Sunday morning, just before eleven. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

MONDAY, APRIL 17, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Do you think Father and Mother would approve of a girl my age sitting on a divan and 
kissing a seventeen- and- a-half-year-old boy? I doubt they would, but I have to 
trust my own judgment in this matter. It's so peaceful and safe, lying in his arms and 
dreaming, it's so thrilling to feel his cheek against mine, it's so wonderful to know 
there's someone waiting for me. But, and there is a but, will Peter want to leave it at 
that? I haven't forgotten his promise, but. . . he is a boy! 

I know I'm starting at a very young age. Not even fifteen and already so independent 

— that's a little hard for other people to understand. I'm pretty sure Margot would 
never kiss a boy unless there was some talk of an engagement or marriage. Neither 
Peter nor I has any such plans. I'm also sure that Mother never touched a man before 
she met Father. What would my girlfriends or Jacque say if they knew I'd lain in 
Peter's arms with my heart against his chest, my head on his shoulder and his head 
and face against mine! 

Oh, Anne, how terribly shocking! But seriously, I don't think it's at all shocking; we're 
cooped up here, cut off from the world, anxious and fearful, especially lately. Why 

should we stay apart when we love each other? Why shouldn't we kiss each other in 

times like these? Why should we wait until we've reached a suitable age? Why should 
we ask anybody's permission? 

I've decided to look out for my own interests. He'd never want to hurt me or make 
me unhappy. Why shouldn't I do what my heart tells me and makes both of us happy? 

Yet I have a feeling, Kitty, that you can sense my doubt. It must be my honesty 
rising in revolt against all this sneaking around. Do you think it's my duty to tell 
Father what I'm up to? Do you think our secret should be shared with a third person? 
Much of the beauty would be lost, but would it make me feel better inside? I'll bring 
it up with him. 

Oh, yes, I still have so much I want to discuss with him, since I don't see the point 
of just cuddling. Sharing our thoughts with each other requires a great deal of trust, 
but we'll both be stronger because of it! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

P.S. We were up at six yesterday morning, because the whole family heard the sounds 
of a break-in again. It must have been one of our neighbors who was the victim this 

time. When we checked at seven o'clock, our doors were still shut tight, thank 

Dearest Kitty, 

Everything's fine here. Last night the carpenter came again to put some sheets of iron 
over the door panels. Father just got through saying he definitely expects large-scale 
operations in Russia and Italy, as well as in the West, before May 20; the longer the 
war lasts, the harder it is to imagine being liberated from this place. 

Yesterday Peter and I finally got around to having the talk we've been postponing for 
the last ten days. I told him all about girls, without hesitating to discuss the most 
intimate matters. I found it rather amusing that he thought the opening in a woman's 
body was simply left out of illustrations. He couldn't imagine that it was actually 
located between a woman's legs. The evening ended with a mutual kiss, near the 
mouth. It's really a lovely feeling! 

I might take my "favorite quotes notebook" up with me sometime so Peter and I can 
go more deeply into matters. I don't think lying in each other's arms day in and day 
out is very satisfying, and I hope he feels the same. 

After our mild winter we've been having a beautiful spring. April is glorious, not too 
hot and not too cold, with occasional light showers. Our chestnut tree is in leaf, and 
here and there you can already see a few small blossoms. 

Bep presented us Saturday with four bouquets of flowers: three bouquets of daffodils, 
and one bouquet of grape hyacinths for me. Mr. Kugler is supplying us with more and 
more newspapers. 

It's time to do my algebra, Kitty. Bye. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
Dearest Darling, 

(That's the title of a movie with Dorit Kreysler, Ida Wust and Harald Paulsen!) 

What could be nicer than sitting before an open window, enjoying nature, listening to 
the birds sing, feeling the sun on your cheeks and holding a darling boy in your arms? 
I feel so peaceful and safe with his arm around me, knowing he's near and yet not 
having to speak; how can this be bad when it does me so much good? Oh, if only we 
were never disturbed again, not even by Mouschi. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

FRIDAY, APRIL 21,1944 

My dearest Kitty, 

I stayed in bed yesterday with a sore throat, but since I was already bored the very 
first afternoon and didn't have a fever, I got up today. My sore throat has nearly 
"verschwunden"* [* disappeared]. 

Yesterday, as you've probably already discovered, was our Fiihrer's fifty-fifth 
birthday. Today is the eighteenth birthday of Her Royal Highness Princess Elizabeth of 
York. The BBC reported that she hasn't yet been declared of age, though royal 
children usually are. We've been wondering which prince they'll marry this beauty off 
to, but can't think of a suitable candidate; perhaps her sister, Princess Margaret Rose, 
can have Crown Prince Baudouin of Belgium! 

Here we've been going from one disaster to the next. No sooner have the outside 
doors been reinforced than van Maaren rears his head again. In all likelihood he's the 
one who stole the potato flour, and now he's trying to pin the blame on Bep. Not 
surprisingly, the Annex is once again in an uproar. Bep is beside herself with rage. 
Perhaps Mr. Kugler will finally have this shady character tailed. 

The appraiser from Beethovenstraat was here this morning. He offered us 400 guilders 
for our chest; in our opinion, the other estimates are also too low. 

I want to ask the magazine The Prince if they'll take one of my fairy tales, under a 
pseudonym, of course. But up to now all my fairy tales have been too long, so I don't 
think I have much of a chance. 

Until the next time, darling. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

TUESDAY, APRIL 25, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

For the last ten days Dussel hasn't been on speaking terms with Mr. van Daan, and all 
because of the new security measures since the break-in. One of these was that he's 
no longer allowed to go downstairs in the evenings. Peter and Mr. van Daan make the 
last round every night at nine-thirty, and after that no one may go downstairs. We 
can't flush the toilet anymore after eight at night or after eight in the morning. The 
windows may be opened only in the morning when the lights go on in Mr. Kugler's 
office, and they can no longer be propped open with a stick at night. This last 
measure is the reason for Dussel's sulking. He claims that Mr. van Daan bawled him 
out, but he has only himself to blame. He says he'd rather live without food than 
without air, and that they simply must figure out a way to keep the windows open. 

"I'll have to speak to Mr. Kugler about this," he said to me. 

I replied that we never discussed matters of this sort with Mr. Kugler, only within the 

"Everything's always happening behind my back. I'll have to talk to your father about 

He's also not allowed to sit in Mr. Kugler's office anymore on Saturday afternoons or 
Sundays, because the manager of Keg's might hear him if he happens to be next door. 
Dussel promptly went and sat there anyway. Mr. van Daan was furious, and Father 
went downstairs to talk to Dussel, who came up with some flimsy excuse, but even 
Father didn't fall for it this time. Now Father's keep- ing his dealings with Dussel to 
a minimum because Dussel insulted him. Not one of us knows what he said, but it 
must have been pretty awful. 

And to think that that miserable man has his birthday next week. How can you 
celebrate your birthday when you've got the sulks, how can you accept gifts from 
people you won't even talk to? 

Mr. Voskuijl is going downhill rapidly. For more than ten days he's had a temperature 
of almost a hundred and four. The doctor said his condition is hopeless; they think the 
cancer has spread to his lungs. The poor man, we'd so like to help him, but only God 
can help him now! 

I've written an amusing story called "Blurry the Explorer," which was a big hit with 
my three listeners. 

I still have a bad cold and have passed it on to Margot, as well as Mother and Father. 
If only Peter doesn't get it. He insisted on a kiss, and called me his El Dorado. You 
can't call a person that, silly boy! But he's sweet anyway! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

Mrs. van D. was in a bad mood this morning. All she did was complain, first about her 
cold, not being able to get cough drops and the agony of having to blow her nose all 
the time. Next she grumbled that the sun wasn't shining, the invasion hadn't started, 
we weren't allowed to look out the windows, etc., etc. We couldn't help but laugh at 
her, and it couldn't have been that bad, since she soon joined in. 

Our recipe for potato kugel, modified due to lack of onions: 

Put peeled potatoes through a food mill and add a little dry government-issue flour 
and salt. Grease a mold or ovenproof dish with paraffin or stearin and bake for 21/2 
hours. Serve with rotten strawberry compote. (Onions not available. Nor oil for mold 
or dough!) 

At the moment I'm reading Emperor Charles V, written by a professor at the 
University of Gottingen; he's spent forty years working on this book. It took me five 
days to read fifty pages. I can't do any more than that. Since the book has 598 pages, 
you can figure out just how long it's going to take me. And that's not even counting 
the second volume. But. . . very interesting! 

The things a schoolgirl has to do in the course of a single day! Take me, for 
example. First, I translated a passage on Nelson's last battle from Dutch into English. 
Then, I read more about the Northern War (1700 — 21) involving Peter the Great, 
Charles XII, Augustus the Strong, Stanislaus Leczinsky, Mazeppa, von Gorz, Bran- 

denburg, Western Pomerania, Eastern Pomerania and Denmark, plus the usual dates. 
Next, I wound up in Brazil, where I read about Bahia tobacco, the abundance of coffee, 

the one and a half million inhabitants of Rio de Janeiro, Pernambuco and Sao Paulo 

and, last but not least, the Amazon River. Then about Negroes, mulattoes, mestizos, 
whites, the illiteracy rate — over 50 percent — and malaria. Since I had some time 
left, I glanced through a genealogical chart: John the Old, William Louis, Ernest 

Casimir I, Henry Casimir I, right up to little Margriet Franciska (born in 1943 in 


Twelve o'clock: I resumed my studies in the attic, reading about deans, priests, 
ministers, popes and . . . whew, it was one o'clock! 

At two the poor child (ho hum) was back at work. Old World and New World 
monkeys were next. Kitty, tell me quickly, how many toes does a hippopotamus have? 

Then came the Bible, Noah's Ark, Shem, Ham and Japheth. After that, Charles V. 
Then, with Peter, Thack- eray's book about the colonel, in English. A French test, 
and then a comparison between the Mississippi and the Missouri! 

Enough for today. Adieu! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

FRIDAY, APRIF 28, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

I've never forgotten my dream of Peter Schiff (see the beginning of January). Even 
now I can still feel his cheek against mine, and that wonderful glow that made up for 
all the rest. Once in a while I'd had the same feeling with this Peter, but never so 
intensely. . . until last night. We were sitting on the divan, as usual, in each other's 
arms. Suddenly the everyday Anne slipped away and the second Anne took her place. 
The second Anne, who's never overconfident or amusing, but wants only to love and 
be gentle. 

I sat pressed against him and felt a wave of emotion come over me. Tears rushed to 
my eyes: those from the left fell on his overalls, while those from the right trickled 
down my nose and into the air and landed beside the first. Did he notice? He made no 
movement to show that he had. Did he feel the same way I did? He hardly said a 
word. Did he realize he had two Annes at his side? My questions went unanswered. 

At eight -thirty I stood up and went to the window, where we always say good-bye. I 
was still trembling, I was still Anne number two. He came over to me, and I threw 

my arms around his neck and kissed him on his left cheek. I was about to kiss the 

other cheek when my mouth met his, and we pressed our lips together. In a daze, we 

embraced, over and over again, never to stop, oh! 

Peter needs tenderness. For the first time in his life he's discovered a girl; for the 

first time he's seen that even the biggest pests also have an inner self and a heart, 
and are transformed as soon as they're alone with you. For the first time in his life 
he's given himself and his friendship to another person. He's never had a friend 
before, boy or girl. Now we've found each other. I, for that matter, didn't know him 
either, had never had someone I could confide in, and it's led to this . . . 

The same question keeps nagging me: "Is it right?" Is it right for me to yield so soon, 
for me to be so passionate, to be filled with as much passion and desire as Peter? 
Can I, a girl, allow myself to go that far? 

There's only one possible answer: "I'm longing so much. . . and have for such a long 
time. I'm so lonely and now I've found comfort!" 

In the mornings we act normally, in the afternoons too, except now and then. But in 
the evenings the suppressed longing of the entire day, the happiness and the bliss of 
all the times before come rushing to the surface, and all we can think about is each 
other. Every night, after our last kiss, I feel like running away and never looking him 

in the eyes again. Away, far away into the darkness and alone! 

And what awaits me at the bottom of those fourteen stairs? Bright lights, questions 
and laughter. I have to act normally and hope they don't notice anything. 

My heart is still too tender to be able to recover so quickly from a shock like the one 
I had last night. The gentle Anne makes infrequent appearances, and she's not about 
to let herself be shoved out the door so soon after she's arrived. Peter's reached a 
part of me that no one has ever reached before, except in my dream! He's taken hold 
of me and turned me inside out. Doesn't everyone need a little quiet time to put 
themselves to rights again? Oh, Peter, what have you done to me? What do you want 
from me? 

Where will this lead? Oh, now I understand Bep. Now, now that I'm going through it 
myself, I understand her doubts! if I were older and he wanted to marry me, what 
would my answer be? Anne, be honest! You wouldn't be able to marry him. But it's so 
hard to let go. Peter still has too little character, too little willpower, too little 
courage and strength. He's still a child, emotionally no older than I am: all he wants is 

happiness and peace of mind. Am I really only fourteen? Am I really just a silly 

schoolgirl? Am I really so inexperienced in everything? I have more experience than 
most: I've experienced something almost no one my age ever has. 

I'm afraid of myself, afraid my longing is making me yield too soon. How can it ever 
go right with other boys later on? Oh, it's so hard, the eternal struggle between heart 

and mind. There's a time and a place for both, but how can I be sure that I've chosen 
the right time? 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

TUESDAY, MAY 2, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Saturday night I asked Peter whether he thinks I should tell Father about us. After 
we'd discussed it, he said he thought I should. I was glad; it shows he's sensible, and 
sensitive. As soon as I came downstairs, I went with Father to get some water. While 
we were on the stairs, I said, "Father, I'm sure you've gathered that when Peter and I 
are together, we don't exactly sit at opposite ends of the room. Do you think that's 

Father paused before answering: "No, I don't think it's wrong. But Anne, when you're 
living so close together, as we do, you have to be careful." He said some other words 
to that effect, and then we went upstairs. 

Sunday morning he called me to him and said, "Anne, I've been thinking about what 
you said." (Oh, oh, I knew what was coming!) "Here in the Annex it's not such a 
good idea. I thought you were just friends. Is Peter in love with you?" 

"Of course not," I answered. 

"Well, you know I understand both of you. But you must be the one to show restraint; 
don't go upstairs so often, don't encourage him more than you can help. In matters 
like these, it's always the man who takes the active role, and it's up to the woman to 
set the limits. Outside, where you're free, things are quite different. You see other 
boys and girls, you can go outdoors, take part in sports and all kinds of activities. But 
here, if you're together too much and want to get away, you can't. You see each other 
every hour of the day-all the time, in fact. Be careful, Anne, and don't take it too 

"I don't, Father, but Peter's a decent boy, a nice boy." 

"Yes, but he doesn't have much strength of character. He can easily be influenced to 
do good, but also to do bad. I hope for his sake that he stays good, because he's 
basically a good person." 

We talked some more and agreed that Father would speak to him too. 

Sunday afternoon when we were in the front attic, Peter asked, "Have you talked to 
your Father yet, Anne?" 

"Yes," I replied, "I'll tell you all about it. He doesn't think it's wrong, but he says that 
here, where we're in such close quarters, it could lead to conflicts." 

"We've already agreed not to quarrel, and I plan to keep my promise." 

"Me too, Peter. But Father didn't think we were serious, he thought we were just 
friends. Do you think we still can be?" 

"Yes, I do. How about you?" 

"Me too. I also told Father that I trust you. I do trust you, Peter, just as much as I 
do Father. And I think you're worthy of my trust. You are, aren't you?" 

"I hope so." (He was very shy, and blushing.) 

"I believe in you, Peter," I continued. "I believe you have a good character and that 
you'll get ahead in this world." 

After that we talked about other things. Later I said, "If we ever get out of here, I 
know you won't give me another thought." 

He got all fired up. "That's not true, Anne. Oh no, I won't let you even think that 
about me!" 

Just then somebody called us. 

Father did talk to him, he told me Monday. "Your Father thought our friendship might 
turn into love," he said. "But I told him we'd keep ourselves under control." 

Father wants me to stop going upstairs so often, but I don't want to. Not just because 
I like being with Peter, but because I've said I trust him. I do trust him, and I want 
to prove it to him, but I'll never be able to if I stay downstairs out of distrust. 

No, I'm going! 

In the meantime, the Dussel drama has been resolved. Saturday evening at dinner he 

apologized in beautiful Dutch. Mr. van Daan was immediately reconciled. Dussel must 
have spent all day practicing his speech. 

Sunday, his birthday, passed without incident. We gave him a bottle of good wine from 
1919, the van Daans (who can now give their gift after all) presented him with a jar 
of piccalilli and a package of razor blades, and Mr. Kugler gave him a jar of lemon 
syrup (to make lemonade), Miep a book, Little Martin, and Bep a plant. He treated 
everyone to an egg. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

First the weekly news! We're having a vacation from politics. There's nothing, and I 
mean absolutely nothing, to report. I'm also gradually starting to believe that the 
invasion will come. After all, they can't let the Russians do all the dirty work; 
actually, the Russians aren't doing anything at the moment either. 

Mr. Kleiman comes to the office every morning now. He got a new set of springs for 
Peter's divan, so Peter will have to get to work reupholstering it; Not surprisingly, he 
isn't at all in the mood. Mr. Kleiman also brought some flea powder for the cats. 

Have I told you that our Boche has disappeared? We haven't seen hide nor hair of her 
since last Thursday. She's probably already in cat heaven, while some animal lover has 
turned her into a tasty dish. Perhaps some girl who can afford it will be wearing a 
cap made of Boche's fur. Peter is heartbroken. 

For the last two weeks we've been eating lunch at eleven-thirty on Saturdays; in the 
mornings we have to make do with a cup of hot cereal. Starting tomorrow it'll be like 
this every day; that saves us a meal. Vegetables are still very hard to come by. This 
afternoon we had rotten boiled lettuce. Ordinary lettuce, spinach and boiled let- tuce, 
that's all there is. Add to that rotten potatoes, and you have a meal fit for a king! 

I hadn't had my period for more than two months, but it finally started last Sunday. 
Despite the mess and bother, I'm glad it hasn't deserted me. 

As you can no doubt imagine, we often say in despair, "What's the point of the war? 
Why, oh, why can't people live together peacefully? Why all this destruction?" 

The question is understandable, but up to now no one has come up with a satisfactory 
answer. Why is England manufacturing bigger and better airplanes and bombs and at 
the same time churning out new houses for reconstruction? Why are millions spent on 
the war each day, while not a penny is available for medical science, artists or the 
poor? Why do people have to starve when mountains of food are rotting away in other 
parts of the world? Oh, why are people so crazy? 

I don't believe the war is simply the work of politicians and capitalists. Oh no, the 
common man is every bit as guilty; otherwise, people and nations would have re- 
belled long ago! There's a destructive urge in people, the urge to rage, murder and 
kill. And until all of humanity, without exception, undergoes a metamorphosis, wars 
will continue to be waged, and everything that has been carefully built up, cultivated 
and grown will be cut down and destroyed, only to start allover again! 

I've often been down in the dumps, but never desperate. I look upon our life in hiding 
as an interesting adventure, full of danger and romance, and every privation as an 
amusing addition to my diary. I've made up my mind to lead a different life from other 
girls, and not to become an ordinary housewife later on. What I'm experiencing here is 
a good beginning to an interesting life, and that's the reason — the only reason — 
why I have to laugh at the humorous side of the most dangerous moments. 

I'm young and have many hidden qualities; I'm young and strong and living through a 
big adventure; I'm right in the middle of it and can't spend all day complaining because 
it's impossible to have any fun! I'm blessed with many things: happiness, a cheerful 
disposition and strength. Every day I feel myself maturing, I feel liberation drawing 
near, I feel the beauty of nature and the goodness of the people around me. Every 
day I think what a fascinating and amusing adventure this is! With all that, why should 
I despair? 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
FRIDAY, MAY 5, 1944 
Dear Kitty, 

Father's unhappy with me. After our talk on Sunday he thought I'd stop going upstairs 
every evening. He won't have any of that "Knutscherej"* [* Necking] going on. I can't 
stand that word. Talking about it was bad enough — why does he have to make me 
feel bad too! I'll have a word with him today. Margot gave me some good advice. 

Here's more or less what I'd like to say: 

I think you expect an explanation from me, Father, so I'll give you one. You're disap- 
pointed in me, you expected more restraint from me, you no doubt want me to act the 
way a fourteen-year-old is supposed to. But that's where you're wrong! 

Since we've been here, from July 1942 until a few weeks ago, I haven't had an easy 
time. If only you knew how much I used to cry at night, how unhappy and despondent 
I was, how lonely I felt, you'd understand my wanting to go upstairs! I've now 
reached the point where I don't need the support of Mother or anyone else. It didn't 
happen overnight. I've struggled long and hard and shed many tears to become as 
independent as I am now. You can laugh and refuse to believe me, but I don't care. I 
know I'm an independent person, and I don't feel I need to account to you for my 
actions. I'm only telling you this because I don't want you to think I'm doing things 
behind your back. But there's only one person I'm accountable to, and that's me. 

When I was having problems, everyone — and that includes you — closed their 
eyes and ears and didn't help me. On the contrary, all I ever got were admonitions not 
to be so noisy. I was noisy only to keep myself from being miserable all the time. I 
was overconfident to keep from having to listen to the voice inside me. I've been 
putting on an act for the last year and a half, day in, day out. I've never complained 
or dropped my mask, nothing of the kind, and now. . . now the battle is over. I've 

won! I'm independent, in both body and mind. I don't need a mother anymore, and I've 

emerged from the struggle a stronger person. 

Now that it's over, now that I know the battle has been won, I want to go my own 

way, to follow the path that seems right to me. Don't think of me as a 

fourteen-year-old, since all these troubles have made me older; I won't regret my 
actions, I'll behave the way I think I should! 

Gentle persuasion won't keep me from going upstairs. You'll either have to forbid it, or 
trust me through thick and thin. Whatever you do, just leave me alone! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

SATURDAY, MAY 6, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Last night before dinner I tucked the letter I'd written into Father's pocket. According 
to Margot, he read it and was upset for the rest of the evening. (I was upstairs doing 
the dishes!) Poor Pirn, I might have known what the effect of such an epistle would 

be. He's so sensitive! I immediately told Peter not to ask any questions or say 
anything more. Pirn's said nothing else to me about the matter. Is he going to? 

Everything here is more or less back to normal. We can hardly believe what Jan, Mr. 
Kugler and Mr. Kleiman tell us about the prices and the people on the outside; half a 
pound of tea costs 350.00 guilders, half a pound of coffee 80.00 guilders, a pound of 
butter 35.00 guilders, one egg 1.45 guilders. People are paying 14.00 guilders an 
ounce for Bulgarian tobacco! Everyone's trading on the black market; every errand boy 
has something to offer. The delivery boy from the bakery has supplied us with darning 
thread-90 cents for one measly skein-the milkman can get hold of ration books, an 
undertaker delivers cheese. Break-ins, murders and thefts are daily occurrences. Even 
the police and night watchmen are getting in on the act. Everyone wants to put food 
in their stomachs, and since salaries have been frozen, people have had to resort to 
swindling. The police have their hands full trying to track down the many girls of 
fifteen, sixteen, seventeen and older who are reported missing every day. 

I want to try to finish my story about Ellen, the fairy. Just for fun, I can give it to 
Father on his birthday, together with all the copyrights. 

See you later! (Actually, that's not the right phrase. In the German program broadcast 
from England they always close with "Aufwiederhoren." So I guess I should say, "Until 
we write again.") 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

Father and I had a long talk yesterday afternoon. I cried my eyes out, and he cried 
too. Do you know what he said to me, Kitty? 

"I've received many letters in my lifetime, but none as hurtful as this. You, who have 
had so much love from your parents. You, whose parents have always been ready to 
help you, who have always defended you, no matter what. You talk of not having to 
account to us for your actions! You feel you've been wronged and left to your own 
devices. No, Anne, you've done us a great injustice! 

"Perhaps you didn't mean it that way, but that's what you wrote. No, Anne, we have 
done nothing to deserve such a reproach!" 

Oh, I've failed miserably. This is the worst thing I've ever done in my entire life. I 
used my tears to show off, to make myself seem important so he'd respect me. I've 
certainly had my share of unhappiness, and everything I said about Mother is true. But 
to accuse Pirn, who's so good and who's done everything for me-no, that was too 
cruel for words. 

It's good that somebody has finally cut me down to size, has broken my pride, 
because I've been far too smug. Not everything Mistress Anne does is good! Any- 
one who deliberately causes such pain to someone they say they love is despicable, 
the lowest of the low! 

What I'm most ashamed of is the way Father has forgiven me; he said he's going to 
throw the letter in the stove, and he's being so nice to me now, as if he were the 
one who'd done something wrong. Well, Anne, you still have a lot to learn. It's time 
you made a beginning, in- stead of looking down at others and always giving them the 

I've known a lot of sorrow, but who hasn't at my age? I've been putting on an act, but 
was hardly even aware of it. I've felt lonely, but never desperate! Not like Father, 
who once ran out into the street with a knife so he could put an end to it all. I've 
never gone that far. 

I should be deeply ashamed of myself, and I am. What's done can't be undone, but at 
least you can keep it from happening again. I'd like to start all over, and that shouldn't 
be difficult, now that I have Peter. With him supporting me, I know I can do it! I'm 
not alone anymore. He loves me, I love him, I have my books, my writing and my 
diary. I'm not all that ugly, or that stupid, I have a sunny disposition, and I want to 
develop a good character! 

Yes, Anne, you knew full well that your letter was unkind and untrue, but you were 
actually proud of it! I'll take Father as my example once again, and I will improve 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
MONDAY, MAY 8, 1944 
Dearest Kitty, 

Have I ever told you anything about our family? I don't think I have, so let me begin. 
Father was born in Frankfurt am Main to very wealthy parents: Michael Frank owned 

a bank and became a millionaire, and Alice Stern's parents were prominent and 
well-to-do. Michael Frank didn't start out rich; he was a self-made man. In his 
youth Father led the life of a rich man's son. Parties every week, balls, banquets, 
beautiful girls, waltzing, dinners, a huge house, etc. After Grandpa died, most of the 
money was lost, and after the Great War and inflation there was nothing left at all. Up 
until the war there were still quite a few rich relatives. So Father was extremely 
well-bred, and he had to laugh yesterday because for the first time in his fifty-five 
years, he scraped out the frying pan at the table. 

Mother's family wasn't as wealthy, but still fairly well-off, and we've listened 
openmouthed to stories of private balls, dinners and engagement parties with 250 

We're far from rich now, but I've pinned all my hopes on after the war. I can assure 
you, I'm not so set on a bourgeois life as Mother and Margot. I'd like to spend a year 
in Paris and London learning the languages and studying art history. Compare that with 
Margot, who wants to nurse newborns in Palestine. I still have visions of gorgeous 
dresses and fascinating people. As I've told you many times before, I want to see the 
world and do all kinds of exciting things, and a little money won't hurt! 

This morning Miep told us about her cousin's engagement party, which she went to on 
Saturday. The cousin's parents are rich, and the groom's are even richer. Miep made 
our mouths water telling us about the food that was served: vegetable soup with 
meatballs, cheese, rolls with sliced meat, hors d'oeuvres made with eggs and roast 
beef, rolls with cheese, genoise, wine and cigarettes, and you could eat as much as 
you wanted. 

Miep drank ten schnapps and smoked three cigarettes — could this be our 
temperance advocate? If Miep drank all those, I wonder how many her spouse 
managed to toss down? Everyone at the party was a little tipsy, of course. There 
were also two officers from the Homicide Squad, who took photographs of the wedding 
couple. You can see we're never far from Miep's thoughts, since she promptly noted 
their names and addresses in case anything should happen and we needed contacts 
with good Dutch people. 

Our mouths were watering so much. We, who'd had nothing but two spoonfuls of hot 
cereal for breakfast and were absolutely famished; we, who get nothing but 
half-cooked spinach (for the vitamins!) and rotten pota- toes day after day; we, who 
fill our empty stomachs with nothing but boiled lettuce, raw lettuce, spinach, spinach 
and more spinach. Maybe we'll end up being as strong as Popeye, though up to now 
I've seen no sign of it! 

If Miep had taken us along to the party, there wouldn't have been any rolls left over 
for the other guests. If we'd been there, we'd have snatched up everything in sight, 
including the furniture. I tell you, we were practically pulling the words right out of 
her mouth. We were gathered around her as if we'd never in all our lives heard of" 
delicious food or elegant people! And these are the granddaughters of the distinguished 
millionaire. The world is a crazy place! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

TUESDAY, MAY 9, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

I've finished my story about Ellen, the fairy. I've copied it out on nice notepaper, 
decorated it with red ink and sewn the pages together. The whole thing looks quite 
pretty, but I don't know if it's enough of a birthday present. Margot and Mother have 
both written poems. 

Mr. Kugler came upstairs this afternoon with the news that starting Monday, Mrs. 
Broks would like to spend two hours in the office every afternoon. Just imagine! The 
office staff won't be able to come upstairs, the potatoes can't be delivered, Bep won't 
get her dinner, we can't go to the bathroom, we won't be able to move and all sorts 
of other inconveniences! We proposed a variety of ways to get rid of her. Mr. van 
Daan thought a good laxative in her coffee might do the trick. "No," Mr. Kleiman 
answered, "please don't, or we'll never get her off the can. 

A roar of laughter. "The can?" Mrs. van D. asked. "What does that mean?" An 
explanation was given. "Is it all right to use that word?" she asked in perfect 
innocence. "Just imagine," Bep giggled, "there you are shopping at The Bijenkorf and 
you ask the way to the can. They wouldn't even know what you were talking about!" 

Dussel now sits on the "can," to borrow the expression, every day at twelve -thirty on 
the dot. This afternoon I boldly took a piece of pink paper and wrote: 

Mr. Dussel's Toilet Timetable 

Mornings from 7: 15 to 7:30 A.M. 

Afternoons after 1 P.M. 

Otherwise, only as needed! 

I tacked this to the green bathroom door while he was still inside. I might well have 
added' 'Transgressors will be subject to confinement!" Because our bathroom can be 
locked from both the inside and the outside. 

Mr. van Daan's latest joke: 

After a Bible lesson about Adam and Eve, a thirteen-year-old boy asked his father, 
"Tell me, Father, how did I get born?" 

"Well," the father replied, "the stork plucked you out of the ocean, set you down in 
Mother's bed and bit her in the leg, hard. It bled so much she had to stay in bed for 
a week." 

Not fully satisfied, the boy went to his mother. "Tell me, Mother," he asked, "how did 
you get born and how did I get born?" 

His mother told him the very same story. Finally, hoping to hear the fine points, he 
went to his grandfather. "Tell me, Grandfather," he said, "how did you get born and 

how did your daughter get born?" And for the third time he was told exactly the same 


That night he wrote in his diary: "After careful inquiry, I must conclude that there has 

been no sexual intercourse in our family for the last three generations!" 

I still have work to do: it's already three o'clock. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

PS. Since I think I've mentioned the new cleaning lady, I just want to note that she's 
married, sixty years old and hard of hearing! Very convenient, in view of all the noise 
that eight people in hiding are capable of mak- ing. 

Oh, Kit, it's such lovely weather. If only I could go outside! 

WEDNESDAY, MAY 10, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

We were sitting in the attic yesterday afternoon working on our French when suddenly 
I heard the splatter of water behind me. I asked Peter what it might be. Without 
pausing to reply, he dashed up to the loft-the scene of the disaster — and shoved 

Mouschi, who was squatting beside her soggy litter box, back to the right place. This 
was followed by shouts and squeals, and then Mouschi, who by that time had finished 

peeing, took off downstairs. In search of something similar to her box, Mouschi had 

found herself a pile of wood shavings, right over a crack in the floor. The puddle 

immediately trickled down to the attic and, as luck would have it, landed in and next 

to the potato barrel. The cethng was dripping, and since the attic floor has also got its 
share of cracks, little yellow drops were leaking through the ceiling and onto the 
dining table, between a pile of stockings and books. 

I was doubled up with laughter, it was such a funny sight. There was Mouschi 
crouched under a chair, Peter armed with water, powdered bleach and a cloth, and Mr. 
van Daan trying to calm everyone down. The room was soon set to rights, but it's a 
well-known fact that cat puddles stink to high heaven. The potatoes proved that all 
too well, as did the wood shavings, which Father collected in a bucket and brought 
downstairs to burn. 

Poor Mouschi! How were you to know it's impossible to get peat for your box? 


THURSDAY, MAY 11, 1944 
Dearest Kitty, 

A new sketch to make you laugh: 

Peter's hair had to be cut, and as usual his mother was to be the hairdresser. At 
seven twenty-five Peter vanished into his room, and reappeared at the stroke of 
seven-thirty, stripped down to his blue swimming trunks and a pair of tennis shoes. 

"Are you coming?" he asked his mother. 

"Yes, I'll be up in a minute, but I can't find the scissors!" 

Peter helped her look, rummaging around in her cosmetics drawer. "Don't make such a 
mess, Peter," she grumbled. 

I didn't catch Peter's reply, but it must have been insolent, because she cuffed him on 
the arm. He cuffed her back, she punched him with all her might, and Peter pulled his 
arm away with a look of mock horror on his face. "Come on, old girl!" 

Mrs. van D. stayed put. Peter grabbed her by the wrists and pulled her all around the 
room. She laughed, cried, scolded and kicked, but nothing helped. Peter led his 
prisoner as far as the attic stairs, where he was obliged to let go of her. Mrs. van D. 
came back to the room and collapsed into a chair with a loud sigh. 

"Die Enifu"hruna der Mutter,". I joked. [* The Abduction of Mother, a possible 
reference to Mozart's opera The Abduction from the Seraglio.] 

"Yes, but he hurt me." 

I went to have a look and cooled her hot, red wrists with water. Peter, still by the 
stairs and growing impa- tient again, strode into the room with his belt in his hand, 
like a lion tamer. Mrs. van D. didn't move, but stayed by her writing desk, looking for 
a handkerchief. "You've got to apologize first." 

"All right, I hereby offer my apologies, but only because if I don't, we'll be here till 

Mrs. van D. had to laugh in spite of herself. She got up and went toward the door, 
where she felt obliged to give us an explanation. (By us I mean Father, Mother and 
me; we were busy doing the dishes.) "He wasn't like this at home," she said. "I'd 
have belted him so hard he'd have gone flying down the stairs [!]. He's never been so 
insolent. This isn't the first time he's deserved a good hiding. That's what you get 
with a modern upbringing, modern children. I'd never have grabbed my mother like 
that. Did you treat your mother that way, Mr. Frank?" She was very upset, pacing 
back and forth, saying whatever came into her head, and she still hadn't gone upstairs. 
Finally, at long last, she made her exit. 

Dess than five minutes later she stormed back down the stairs, with her cheeks all 
puffed out, and flung her apron on a chair. When I asked if she was through, she 
replied that she was going downstairs. She tore down the stairs like a tornado, 
probably straight into the arms of her Putti. 

She didn't come up again until eight, this time with her husband. Peter was dragged 
from the attic, given a merciless scolding and showered with abuse: ill-mannered brat, 
no-good bum, bad example, Anne this, Margot that, I couldn't hear the rest. 

Everything seems to have calmed down again today! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

P.S. Tuesday and Wednesday evening our beloved Queen addressed the country. She's 
taking a vacation so she'll be in good health for her return to the Netherlands. 

She used words like "soon, when I'm back in Holland," "a swift liberation," "heroism" 
and "heavy burdens." 

This was followed by a speech by Prime Minister Gerbrandy. He has such a squeaky 
little child's voice that Mother instinctively said, "Oooh." A clergyman, who must have 
borrowed his voice from Mr. Edel, concluded by asking God to take care of the Jews, 
all those in concentration camps and prisons and everyone working in Germany. 

THURSDAY, MAY 11, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Since I've left my entire "junk box" — including my fountain pen — upstairs and 
I'm not allowed to disturb the grown-ups during their nap time (until two-thirty), 
you'll have to make do with a letter in pencil. 

I'm terribly busy at the moment, and strange as it may sound, I don't have enough 
time to get through my pile of work. Shall I tell you briefly what I've got to do? Well 
then, before tomorrow I have to finish reading the first volume of a biography of 
Galileo Galilei, since it has to be returned to the library. I started reading it yesterday 
and have gotten up to page 220 out of 320 pages, so I'll manage it. Next week I have 
to read Palestine at the Cross- roads and the second volume of Galilei. Besides that, 
I finished the first volume of a biography of Emperor Charles V yesterday, and I still 
have to work out the many genealogical charts I've collected and the notes I've taken. 
Next I have three pages of foreign words from my various books, all of which have to 
be written down, memorized and read aloud. Number four: my movie stars are in a 
terrible disarray and are dying to be straightened out, but since it'll take several days 

to do that and Professor Anne is, as she's already said, up to her ears in work, they'll 

have to put up with the chaos a while longer. Then there're Theseus, Oedipus, Peleus, 
Orpheus, Jason and Hercules all waiting to be untangled, since their various deeds are 
running crisscross through my mind like mul— ticolored threads in a dress. Myron and 
Phidias are also urgently in need of attention, or else I'll forget entirely how they fit 

into the picture. The same applies, for example, to the Seven Years' War and the Nine 

Years' War. Now I'm getting everything all mixed up. Well, what can you do with a 
memory like mine! Just imagine how forgetful I'll be when I'm eighty! 

Oh, one more thing. The Bible. How long is it going to take before I come to the 
story of the bathing Susanna? And what do they mean by Sodom and Gomorrah? Oh, 

there's still so much to find out and learn. And in the meantime, I've left Charlotte of 
the Palatine in the lurch. 

You can see, can't you, Kitty, that I'm full to bursting? 

And now something else. You've known for a long time that my greatest wish is to be 
a journalist, and later on, a famous writer. We'll have to wait and see if these grand 
illusions (or delusions!) will ever come true, but up to now I've had no lack of topics. 
In any case, after the war I'd like to publish a book called The Secret Annex. It 
remains to be seen whether I'll succeed, but my diary can serve as the basis. 

I also need to finish "Cady's Life." I've thought up the rest of the plot. After being 
cured in the sanatorium, Cady goes back home and continues writing to Hans. It's 

1941, and it doesn't take her long to discover Hans's Nazi sympathies, and since Cady 

is deeply concerned with the plight of the Jews and of her friend Marianne, they begin 
drifting apart. They meet and get back together, but break up when Hans takes up 
with another girl. Cady is shattered, and because she wants to have a good job, she 
studies nursing. After graduation she accepts a position, at the urging of her father's 
friends, as a nurse in a TB sanatorium in Switzerland. During her first vacation she 
goes to Lake Como, where she runs into Hans. He tells her that two years earlier 
he'd married Cady's successor, but that his wife took her life in a fit of depression. 
Now that he's seen his little Cady again, he realizes how much he loves her, and once 
more asks for her hand in marriage. Cady refuses, even though, in spite of herself, 

she loves him as much as ever. But her pride holds her back. Hans goes away, and 

years later Cady learns that he's wound up in England, where he's struggling with ill 

When she's twenty-seven, Cady marries a well-to-do man from the country, named 
Simon. She grows to love him, but not as much as Hans. She has two daughters and a 
son, Lthan, Judith and Nico. She and Simon are happy together, but Hans is always in 
the back of her mind until one night she dreams of him and says farewell. 

It's not sentimental nonsense: it's based on the story of Father's life. 
Yours, Anne M. Frank 
SATURDAY, MAY 13, 1944 

My dearest Kitty, 

Yesterday was Father's birthday, Father and Mother's nineteenth wedding anniversary, 
a day without the cleaning lady. . . and the sun was shining as it's never shone before 
in 1944. Our chestnut tree is in full bloom. It's covered with leaves and is even more 
beautiful than last year. 

Father received a biography of Linnaeus from Mr. Kleiman, a book on nature from Mr. 
Kugler, The Canals of Amsterdam from Dussel, a huge box from the van Daans 
(wrapped so beautifully it might have been done by a professional), containing three 
eggs, a bottle of beer, a jar of yogurt and a green tie. It made our jar of molasses 
seem rather paltry. My roses smelled wonderful compared to Miep and Bep's red 
carnations. He was thoroughly spoiled. Fifty petits fours arrived from Siemons' 

Bakery, delicious! Father also treated us to spice cake, the men to beer and the ladies 
to yogurt. Everything was scrumptious! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

TUESDAY, MAY 16, 1944 

My dearest Kitty, just for a change (since we haven't had one of these in so long) I'll 
recount a little discussion between Mr. and Mrs. van D. last night: 

Mrs. van D.: "The Germans have had plenty of time to fortify the Atlantic Wall, and 
they'll certainly do everything within their power to hold back the British. It's amazing 
how strong the Germans are!" 

Mr. van D.: "Oh, yes, amazing. 

Mrs. van D.: "It is!" 

Mr. van D.: "They are so strong they're bound to win the war in the end, is that what 
you mean?" 

Mrs. van D.: "They might. I'm not convinced that they won't." 

Mr. van D.: "I won't even answer that." 

Mrs. van D.: "You always wind up answering. You let yourself get carried away, every 
single time." 

Mr. van D.: "No, I don't. I always keep my answers to the bare minimum. 

Mrs. van D.: "But you always do have an answer and you always have to be right! 
Your predictions hardly ever come true, you know!" 

Mr. van D.: "So far they have." 

Mrs. van D.: "No they haven't. You said the invasion was going to start last year, the 
Finns were supposed to have been out of the war by now, the Italian campaign ought 
to have been over by last winter, and the Russians should already have captured 
Lemberg. Oh no, I don't set much store by your predictions." 

Mr. van D. (leaping to his feet): "Why don't you shut your trap for a change? I'll 
show you who's right; someday you'll get tired of needling me. I can't stand your 
bellyaching a minute longer, just wait, one day I'll make you eat your words!" (End of 
Act One.) 

Actually, I couldn't help giggling. Mother couldn't either, and even Peter was biting his 
lips to keep from laughing. Oh, those stupid grown-ups. They need to learn a few 
things first before they start making so many remarks about the younger generation! 

Since Friday we've been keeping the windows open again at night. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

What Our Annex Family Is Interested In 
(A Systematic Survey of Courses and Readina Matter) 

Mr. van Daan. No courses; looks up many things in Knaur's Encyclopedia and Lexicon; 
likes to read detective stories, medical books and love stories, exciting or trivial. 

Mrs. van Daan. A correspondence course in English; likes to read biographical novels 
and occasionally other kinds of novels. 

Mr. Frank. Is learning English (Dickens!) and a bit of Latin; never reads novels, but 
likes serious, rather dry descriptions of people and places. 

Mrs. Frank. A correspondence course in English; reads everything except detective 

Mr. Dussel. Is learning English, Spanish and Dutch with no noticeable results! reads 

everything; goes along with the opinion of the majority. 

Peter van Daan. Is learning English, French (correspondence course), shorthand in 
Dutch, English and German, commercial correspondence in English, woodworking, 
economics and sometimes math; seldom reads, sometimes geography. 

Margot Frank. Correspondence courses in English, French and Latin, shorthand in 
English, German and Dutch, trigonometry, solid geometry, mechanics, phys- ics, 
chemistry, algebra, geometry, English literature, French literature, German literature, 
Dutch literature, bookkeeping, geography, modern history, biology, economics; reads 
everything, preferably on religion and medicine. 

Anne Frank. Shorthand in French, English, German and Dutch, geometry, algebra, 
history, geography, art history, mythology, biology, Bible history, Dutch literature; likes 
to read biographies, dull or exciting, and history books (sometimes novels and light 

FRIDAY, MAY 19, 1944 
Dearest Kitty, 

I felt rotten yesterday. Vomiting (and that from Anne!), headache, stomachache and 
anything else you can imagine. I'm feeling better today. I'm famished, but I think I'll 
skip the brown beans we're having for dinner. 

Everything's going fine between Peter and me. The poor boy has an even greater need 
for tenderness than I do. He still blushes every evening when he gets his good-night 
kiss, and then begs for another one. Am I merely a better substitute for Boche? I 
don't mind. He's so happy just knowing somebody loves him. 

After my laborious conquest, I've distanced myself a little from the situation, but you 
mustn't think my love has cooled. Peter's a sweetheart, but I've slammed the door to 
my inner self; if he ever wants to force the lock again, he'll have to use a harder 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
SATURDAY, MAY 20, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Last night when I came down from the attic, I noticed, the moment I entered the 
room, that the lovely vase of carnations had fallen over. Mother was down on her 
hands and knees mopping up the water and Margot was fishing my papers off the 
floor. "What happened?" I asked with anxious foreboding, and before they could reply, 
I assessed the damage from across the room. My entire genealogy file, my notebooks, 
my books, everything was afloat. I nearly cried, and I was so upset I started speaking 

German. I can't remember a word, but according to Margot I babbled something about 

"unlioersehbarer Schaden, schrecklich, entsetzlich, nie zu ersetzen"* [* Incalculable 
loss, terrible, awful, irreplaceable.] and much more. Fadier burst out laughing and 
Modier and Margot joined in, but I felt like crying because all my work and elaborate 
notes were lost. 

I took a closer look and, luckily, die "incalculable loss" wasn't as bad as I'd expected. 
Up in die attic I carefully peeled apart die sheets of paper diat were stuck togedier 

and dien hung diem on die clodiesline to dry. It was such a funny sight, even I had to 

laugh. Maria de' Medici alongside Charles V, William of Orange and Marie Antoinette. 

"It's Rassenschande,"* Mr. van Daan joked. [An affront to racial purity.] 

After entrusting my papers to Peter's care, I went back downstairs. 

"Which books are ruined?" I asked Margot, who was going dirough them. 

"Algebra," Margot said. 

But as luck would have it, my algebra book wasn't entirely ruined. I wish it had fallen 
right in the vase. I've never loathed any book as much as that one. Inside the front 
cover are the names of at least twenty girls who had it before I did. It's old, 
yellowed, full of scribbles, crossed-out words and revisions. The next time I'm in a 
wicked mood, I'm going to tear the darned thing to pieces! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

MONDAY, MAY 22,1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

On May 20, Father lost his bet and had to give five jars of yogurt to Mrs. van Daan: 
the invasion still hasn't begun. I can safely say that all of Amsterdam, all of Holland, 
in fact the entire western coast of Europe, all the way down to Spain, are talking 
about the invasion day and night, debating, making bets and . . . hoping. 

The suspense is rising to fever pitch; by no means has everyone we think of as 
"good" Dutch people kept their faith in the English, not everyone thinks the English 
bluff is a masterful strategical move. Oh no, people want deeds-great, heroic deeds. 

No one can see farther than the end of their nose, no one gives a thought to the fact 
that the British are fighting for their own country and their own people; everyone 
thinks it's England's duty to save Holland, as quickly as possible. What obligations do 
the English have toward us? What have the Dutch done to deserve the generous help 
they so clearly expect? Oh no, the Dutch are very much mistaken. The English, 

despite their bluff, are certainly no more to blame for the war than all the other 

countries, large and small, that are now occupied by the Germans. The British are not 
about to offer their excuses; true, they were sleeping during the years Germany was 

rearming itself, but all the other countries, especially those bordering on Germany, 

were asleep too. England and the rest of the world have discovered that burying your 
head in the sand doesn't work, and now each of them, especially England, is having to 
pay a heavy price for its ostrich policy. 

No country sacrifices its men without reason, and certainly not in the interests of 
another, and England is no exception. The invasion, liberation and freedom will come 
someday; yet England, not the occupied territories, will choose the moment. 

To our great sorrow and dismay, we've heard that many people have changed their 
attitude toward us Jews. We've been told that anti-Semitism has cropped up in circles 
where once it would have been unthinkable. This fact has affected us all very, very 
deeply. The reason for the hatred is understandable, maybe even human, but that 
doesn't make it right. According to the Christians, the Jews are blabbing their secrets 
to the Germans, denouncing their helpers and causing them to suffer the dreadful fate 
and punishments that have already been meted out to so many. All of this is true. But 
as with everything, they should look at the matter from both sides: would Christians 
act any differently if they were in our place? Could anyone, regardless of whether 
they're Jews or Christians, remain silent in the face of German pressure? Everyone 
knows it's practically impossible, so why do they ask the impossible of the Jews? 

It's being said in underground circles that the German Jews who immigrated to Holland 
before the war and have now been sent to Poland shouldn't be allowed to return here. 
They were granted the right to asylum in Holland, but once Hitler is gone, they should 
go back to Germany. 

When you hear that, you begin to wonder why we're fighting this long and difficult 
war. We're always being told that we're fighting for freedom, truth and justice! The 

war isn't even over, and already there's dissension and Jews are regarded as lesser 
beings. Oh, it's sad, very sad that the old adage has been confirmed for the umpteenth 
time: "What one Christian does is his own responsibthty, what one Jew does reflects 
on all Jews." 

To be honest, I can't understand how the Dutch, a nation of good, honest, upright 
people, can sit in judgment on us the way they do. On us-the most oppressed, 
unfortunate and pitiable people in all the world. 

I have only one hope: that this anti-Semitism is just a passing thing, that the Dutch 
will show their true colors, that they'll never waver from what they know in their 
hearts to be just, for this is unjust! 

And if they ever carry out this terrible threat, the meager handful of Jews still left in 
Holland will have to go. We too will have to shoulder our bundles and move on, away 
from this beautiful country, which once so kindly took us in and now turns its back on 

I love Holland. Once I hoped it would become a fatherland to me, since I had lost my 
own. And I hope so still! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

THURSDAY, MAY 25, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Bep's engaged! The news isn't much of a surprise, though none of us are particularly 
pleased. Bertus may be a nice, steady, athletic young man, but Bep doesn't love him, 
and to me that's enough reason to advise her against marrying him. 

Bep's trying to get ahead in the world, and Bertus is pulling her back: he's a laborer, 
without any interests or any desire to make something of himself, and I don't think 
that'll make Bep happy. I can understand Bep's wanting to put an end to her 
indecision; four weeks ago she decided to write him off, but then she felt even worse. 
So she wrote him a letter, and now she's engaged. 

There are several factors involved in this engagement. First, Bep's sick father, who 
likes Bertus very much. Second, she's the oldest of the Voskuijl girls and her mother 
teases her about being an old maid. Third, she's just turned twenty-four, and that 
matters a great deal to Bep. 

Mother said it would have been better if Bep had simply had an affair with Bertus. I 
don't know, I feel sorry for Bep and can understand her loneliness. In any case, they 
can get married only after the war, since Bertus is in hiding, or at any rate has gone 
underground. Besides, they don't have a penny to their name and nothing in the way 
of a hope chest. What a sorry prospect for Bep, for whom we all wish the best. I 
only hope Bertus improves under her influence, or that Bep finds another man, one 
who knows how to appreciate her! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


There's something happening every day. This morning Mr. van Hoeven was arrested. 

He was hiding two Jews in his house. It's a heavy blow for us, not only because 

those poor Jews are once again balancing on the edge of an abyss, but also because 
it's terrible for Mr. van Hoeven. 

The world's been turned upside down. The most decent people are being sent to 

concentration camps, prisons and lonely cells, while the lowest of the low rule over 

young and old, rich and poor. One gets caught for black marketeering, another for 
hiding Jews or other un- fortunate souls. Unless you're a Nazi, you don't know what's 
going to happen to you from one day to the next. 

Mr. van Hoeven is a great loss to us too. Bep can't possibly lug such huge amounts of 
potatoes all the way here, nor should she have to, so our only choice is to eat fewer 
of them. I'll tell you what we have in mind, but it's certainly not going to make life 
here any more agreeable. Mother says we'll skip breakfast, eat hot cereal and bread 
for lunch and fried potatoes for dinner and, if possible, vegetables or lettuce once or 
twice a week. That's all there is. We're going to be hungry, but nothing's worse than 
being caught. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

FRIDAY, MAY 26, 1944 

My dearest Kitty, 

At long, long last, I can sit quietly at my table before the crack in the window frame 
and write you everything, everything I want to say. 

I feel more miserable than I have in months. Even after the break— in I didn't feel so 
utterly broken, inside and out. On the one hand, there's the news about Mr. van 
Hoeven, the Jewish question (which is discussed in detail by everyone in the house), 
the invasion (which is so long in coming), the awful food, the tension, the misera- 
ble atmosphere, my disappointment in Peter. On the other hand, there's Bep's 
engagement, the Pentecost reception, the flowers, Mr. Kugler's birthday, cakes and 
stories about cabarets, movies and concerts. That gap, that enormous gap, is always 
there. One day we're laugh- ing at the comical side of life in hiding, and the next day 
(and there are many such days), we're frightened, and the fear, tension and despair 
can be read on our faces. 

Miep and Mr. Kugler bear the greatest burden for us, and for all those in hiding-Miep 
in everything she does and Mr. Kugler through his enormous responsibthty for the 
eight of us, which is sometimes so overwhelming that he can hardly speak from the 
pent-up tension and strain. Mr. Kleiman and Bep also take very good care of us, but 
they're able to put the Annex out of their minds, even if it's only for a few hours or 

a few days. They have their own worries, Mr. Kleiman with his health and Bep with 

her engagement, which isn't looking very promising lat the moment. But they also have 
their outings, their visits with friends, their everyday lives as ordinary people, so that 
the tension is sometimes relieved, if only for a short while, while ours never is, never 
has been, not once in the two years we've been here. How much longer will this 
increasingly oppressive, unbearable weight press I down on us? 

The drains are clogged again. We can't run the wa- ter, or if we do, only a trickle; 

we can't flush the toilet, so we have to use a toilet brush; and we've been putting our 
dirty water into a big earthenware jar. We can man- age for today, but what will 
happen if the plumber can't fix it on his own? The Sanitation Department can't come 
until Tuesday. 

Miep sent us a raisin bread with "Happy Pentecost" written on top. It's almost as if 
she were mocking us, since our moods and cares are far from "happy." 

We've all become more frightened since the van Hoeven business. Once again you hear 
"shh" from all I sides, and we're doing everything more quietly. The police forced the 
door there; they could just as easily do that here too! What will we do if we're ever. 
. . no, I mustn't write that down. But the question won't let itself be pushed to the 
back of my mind today; on the contrary, all the fear I've ever felt is looming before 
me in all its horror. 

I had to go downstairs alone at eight this evening to use the bathroom. There was no 
one down there, since they were all listening to the radio. I wanted to be brave, but it 

was hard. I always feel safer upstairs than in that huge, silent house; when I'm alone 
with those mysterious muffied sounds from upstairs and the honking of horns in the 
street, I have to hurry and remind myself where I am to keep from getting the 

Miep has been acting much nicer toward us since her talk with Father. But I haven't 
told you about that yet. Miep came up one afternoon all flushed and asked Father 
straight out if we thought they too were infected with the current anti-Semitism. 
Father was stunned and quickly talked her out of the idea, but some of Miep's 
suspicion has lingered on. They're doing more errands for us now and showing more 
of an interest in our troubles, though we certainly shouldn't bother them with our 
woes. Oh, they're such good, noble people! 

I've asked myself again and again whether it wouldn't have been better if we hadn't 
gone into hiding, if we were dead now and didn't have to go through this misery, 
especially so that the others could be spared the burden. But we all shrink from this 
thought. We still love life, we haven't yet forgotten the voice of nature, and we keep 
hoping, hoping for. . . everything. 

Let something happen soon, even an air raid. Nothing can be more crushing than this 
anxiety. Let the end come, however cruel; at least then we'll know whether we are to 
be the victors or the vanquished. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

WEDNESDAY, MAY 31, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday it was too hot to hold my fountain pen, which 
is why I couldn't write to you. Friday the drains were clogged, Saturday they were 
fixed. Mrs. Kleiman came for a visit in the afternoon and told us a lot about Jopiej 
she and Jacque van Maarsen are in the same hockey club. Sunday Bep dropped by to 
make sure there hadn't been a break-in and stayed for breakfast. Monday (a holiday 
because of Pentecost), Mr. Gies served as the Annex watchman, and Tuesday we 
were finally allowed to open the windows. We've seldom had a Pentecost weekend that 
was so beautiful and warm. Or maybe "hot" is a better word. Hot weather is horrible 
in the Annex. To give you an idea of the numerous complaints, I'll briefly describe 
these sweltering days. 

Saturday: "Wonderful, what fantastic weather," we all said in the morning. "If only it 

weren't quite so hot," we said in the afternoon, when the windows had to be shut. 

Sunday: "The heat's unbearable, the butter's melt- ing, there's not a cool spot 
anywhere in the house, the bread's drying out, the milk's going sour, the windows 
can't be opened. We poor outcasts are suffocating while everyone else is enjoying 
their Pentecost." (According to Mrs. van D.) 

Monday: "My feet hurt, I have nothing cool to wear, I can't do the dishes in this 
heat!" Grumbling from early in the morning to late at night. It was awful. 

I can't stand the heat. I'm glad the wind's come up today, but that the sun's still 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
FRIDAY, JUNE 2, 1944 J 
Dear Kitty, 

"If you're going to the attic, take an umbrella with you, preferably a large one!" This 
is to protect you from "household showers." There's a Dutch proverb: "High and dry, 
safe and sound," but it obviously doesn't apply to wartime (guns!) and to people in 
hiding (cat box!). Mouschi's gotten into the habit of relieving herself on some 
newspapers or between the cracks in the floor boards, so we have good reason to fear 
the splatters and, even worse, the stench. The new Moortje in the warehouse has the 
same problem. Anyone who's ever had a cat that's not housebroken can imagine the 
smells, other than pepper and thyme, that permeate this house. 

I also have a brand-new prescription for gunfire jitters: When the shooting gets loud, 
proceed to the nearest wooden staircase. Run up and down a few times, making sure 
to stumble at least once. What with the scratches and the noise of running and falling, 
you won't even be able to hear the shooting, much less worry about it. Yours truly 
has put this magic formula to use, with great success! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

MONDAY, JUNE 5, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

New problems in the Annex. A quarrel between Dussel and the Franks over the 

division of butter. Capitulation on the part of Dussel. Close friendship between the 
latter and Mrs. van Daan, flirtations, kisses and friendly little smiles. Dussel is 
beginning to long for female companionship. 

The van Daans don't see why we should bake a spice cake for Mr. Kugler's birthday 
when we can't have one ourselves. All very petty. Mood upstairs: bad. Mrs. van D. 
has a cold. Dussel caught with brewer's yeast tablets, while we've got none. 

The Fifth Army has taken Rome. The city neither destroyed nor bombed. Great 
propaganda for Hitler. 

Very few potatoes and vegetables. One loaf of bread was moldy. 

Scharminkeltje (name of new warehouse cat) can't stand pepper. She sleeps in the cat 
box and does her business in the wood shavings. Impossible to keep her. 

Bad weather. Continuous bombing of Pas de Calais and the west coast of France. 

No one buying dollars. Gold even less interesting. 

The bottom of our black moneybox is in sight. What are we going to live on next 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
TUESDAY, JUNE 6, 1944 
My dearest Kitty, 

"This is D Day," the BBC announced at twelve. 

"This is the day." The invasion has begun! 

This morning at eight the British reported heavy bombing of Calais, Boulogne, Le 
Havre and Cherbourg, as well as Pas de Calais (as usual). Further, as a precautionary 
measure for those in the occupied territories, everyone living within a zone of twenty 
miles from the coast was warned to prepare for bombardments. Where possible, the 
British will drop pamphlets an hour ahead of time. 

According to the German news, British paratroopers have landed on the coast of 
France. "British landing craft are engaged in combat with German naval units," 

according to the BBC. 

Conclusion reached by the Annex while breakfasting at nine: this is a trial landing, like 
the one two years ago in Dieppe. 

BBC broadcast in German, Dutch, French and other languages at ten: The invasion has 
begun! So this is the "real" invasion. BBC broadcast in German at eleven: speech by 
Supreme Commander General Dwight Eisenhower. 

BBC broadcast in English: "This is 0 Day." General Eisenhower said to the French 
people: "Stiff fighting will come now, but after this the victory. The year 1944 is the 
year of complete victory. Good luck!" 

BBC broadcast in English at one: 11,000 planes are shuttling back and forth or 
standing by to land troops and bomb behind enemy lines! 4,000 landing craft and small 
boats are continually arriving in the area between Cher- bourg and Le Elavre. English 
and American troops are already engaged in heavy combat. Speeches by Gerbrandy, 
the Prime Minister of Belgium, King Elaakon of Norway, de Gaulle of France, the King 
of England and, last but not least, Churchill. 

A huge commotion in the Annex! Is this really the beginning of the long-awaited 
liberation? The liberation we've all talked so much about, which still seems too good, 
too much of a fairy tale ever to come true? Will this year, 1944, bring us victory? We 
don't know yet. But where there's hope, there's life. It fills us with fresh courage and 
makes us strong again. We'll need to be brave to endure the many fears and hardships 
and the suffering yet to come. It's now a matter of remaining calm and steadfast, of 
gritting our teeth and keeping a stiff upper lip! France, Russia, Italy, and even 
Germany, can cry out in agony, but we don't yet have that right! 

Oh, Kitty, the best part about the invasion is that I have the feeling that friends are 
on the way. Those terrible Germans have oppressed and threatened us for so long that 
the thought of friends and salvation means everything to us! Now it's not just the 
Jews, but Holland and all of occupied Europe. Maybe, Margot says, I can even go back 
to school in October or September. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

P.S. I'll keep you informed of the latest news! 

This morning and last night, dummies made of straw and rubber were dropped from 
the air behind German lines, and they exploded the minute they hit the ground. Many 

paratroopers, their faces blackened so they couldn't be seen in the dark, landed as 
well. The French coast was bombarded with 5,500 tons of bombs during the night, and 
then, at six in the morning, the first landing craft came ashore. Today there were 
20,000 airplanes in action. The German coastal batteries were destroyed even before 
the landing; a small bridgehead has already been formed. Everything's going well, 
despite the bad weather. The army and the people are "one will and one hope." 

FRIDAY, JUNE 9, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Great news of the invasion! The Allies have taken Bayeux, a village on the coast of 
France, and are now fighting for Caen. They're clearly intending to cut off the 
peninsula where Cherbourg is located. Every evening the war correspondents report on 
the difficulties, the courage and the fighting spirit of the army. To get their stories, 
they pull off the most amazing feats. A few of the wounded who are already back in 
England also spoke on the radio. Despite the miserable weather, the planes are flying 
dthgently back and forth. We heard over the BBC that Churchill wanted to land along 
with the troops on D Day, but Eisenhower and the other generals managed to talk him 

out of it. Just imagine, so much courage for such an old man he must be at least 


The excitement here has died down somewhat; still, we're all hoping that the war will 

finally be over by the end of the year. It's about time! Mrs. van Daan's constant 

griping is unbearable; now that she can no longer drive us crazy with the invasion, she 
moans and groans all day about the bad weather. If only we could plunk her down in 
the loft in a bucket of cold water! 

Everyone in the Annex except Mr. van Daan and Peter has read the Hunaarian 
Rhapsody trilogy, a biography of the composer, piano virtuoso and child prodigy Franz 
Liszt. It's very interesting, though in my opinion there's a bit too much emphasis on 
women; Liszt was not only the greatest and most famous pianist of his time, he was 
also the biggest womanizer, even at the age of seventy. He had an affair with 
Countess Marie d' Agoult, Princess Carolyne Sayn- Wittgenstein, the dancer Lola 
Montez, the pianist Agnes Kingworth, the pianist Sophie Menter, the Circassian 
princess Olga Janina, Baroness Olga Meyen- dorff, actress Lilia what's-her-name, 
etc., etc., and there's no end to it. Those parts of the book dealing with music and the 
other arts are much more interesting. Some of the people mentioned are Schumann, 
Clara Wieck, Hector Berlioz, Johannes Brahms, Beethoven, Joachim, Richard Wagner, 
Hans von Bulow, Anton Rubinstein, Frederic Chopin, Victor Hugo, Honore de Balzac, 
Hiller, Hummel, Czerny, Rossini, Cherubini, Paganini, Mendels— sohn, etc., etc. 

Liszt appears to have been a decent man, very generous and modest, though 
exceptionally vain. He helped others, put art above all else, was extremely fond of 
cognac and women, couldn't bear the sight of tears, was a gentleman, couldn't refuse 
anyone a favor, wasn't interested in money and cared about religious freedom and the 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 
TUESDAY, JUNE 13, 1944 
Dearest Kit, 

Another birthday has gone by, so I'm now fifteen. I received quite a few gifts: 
Springer's five-volume art history book, a set of underwear, two belts, a handkerchief, 
two jars of yogurt, a jar of jam, two honey cookies (small), a botany book from 
Father and Mother, a gold bracelet from Margot, a sticker album from the van Daans, 
Biomalt and sweet peas from Dussel, candy from Miep, candy and notebooks from Bep, 
and the high point: the book Maria Theresa and three slices of full-cream cheese 
from Mr. Kugler. Peter gave me a lovely bouquet of peonies: the poor boy had put a 
lot of effort into finding a present, but nothing quite worked out. 

The invasion is still going splendidly, in spite of the miserable weather — pouring 
rains, gale winds and high seas. 

Yesterday Churchill, Smuts, Eisenhower and Arnold visited the French villages that the 
British have captured and liberated. Churchill was on a torpedo boat that shelled the 
coast. Uke many men, he doesn't seem to know what fear is — an enviable trait! 

From our position here in Fort Annex, it's difficult to gauge the mood of the Dutch. 
No doubt many people are glad the idle (!) British have finally rolled up their sleeves 
and gotten down to work. Those who keep claim- ing they don't want to be occupied 
by the British don't realize how unfair they're being. Their line of reasoning boils 
down to this: England must fight, struggle and sacri- fice its sons to liberate Holland 
and the other occupied countries. After that the British shouldn't remain in Hoi— land: 
they should offer their most abject apologies to all the occupied countries, restore the 
Dutch East Indies to its rightful owner and then return, weakened and impoverished, to 
England. What a bunch of idiots. And yet, as I've already said, many Dutch people can 
be counted among their ranks. What would have become of Holland and its neighbors if 

England had signed a peace treaty with Germany, as it's had ample opportunity to do? 
Holland would have become German, and that would have been the end of that! 

All those Dutch people who still look down on the British, scoff at England and its 
government of old fogies, call the English cowards, yet hate the Germans, should be 
given a good shaking, the way you'd plump up a pillow. Maybe that would straighten 
out their jumbled brains! 

Wishes, thoughts, accusations and reproaches are swirling around in my head. I'm not 
really as conceited as many people think; I know my various faults and shortcomings 
better than anyone else, but there's one difference: I also know that I want to change, 
will change and already have changed greatly! 

Why is it, I often ask myself, that everyone still thinks I'm so pushy and such a 
know-it-all? Am I really so arrogant? Am I the one who's so arrogant, or are they? 
It sounds crazy, I know, but I'm not going to cross out that last sentence, because it's 
not as crazy as it seems. Mrs. van Daan and Dussel, my two chief accusers, are 
known to be totally unintelligent and, not to put too fine a point on it, just plain 
"stupid"! Stupid people usually can't bear it when others do something better than they 
do; the best examples of this are those two dummies, Mrs. van Daan and Dussel. Mrs. 
van D. thinks I'm stupid because I don't suffer so much from this ailment as she does, 
she thinks I'm pushy because she's even pushier, she thinks my dresses are too short 
because hers are even shorter, and she thinks I'm such a know-it-all because she 
talks twice as much as I do about topics she knows nothing about. The same goes for 
Dussel. But one of my favorite sayings is "Where there's smoke there's fire," and I 
readily admit I'm a know-it-all. 

What's so difficult about my personality is that I scold and curse myself much more 
than anyone else does; if Mother adds her advice, the pile of sermons becomes so 
thick that I despair of ever getting through them. Then I talk back and start 
contradicting everyone until the old famthar Anne refrain inevitably crops up again: 
"No one understands me!" 

This phrase is part of me, and as unlikely as it may seem, there's a kernel of truth in 
it. Sometimes I'm so deeply buried under self-reproaches that I long for a word of 
comfort to help me dig myself out again. If only I had someone who took my feelings 
seriously. Alas, I haven't yet found that person, so the search must go on. 

I know you're wondering about Peter, aren't you, Kit? It's true, Peter loves me, not as 
a girlfriend, but as a friend. His affection grows day by day, but some mysterious 
force is holding us back, and I don't know what it is. 

Sometimes I think my terrible longing for him was overexaggerated. But that's not 
true, because if I'm unable to go to his room for a day or two, I long for him as 
desperately as I ever did. Peter is kind and good, and yet I can't deny that he's 
disappointed me in many ways. I especially don't care for his dislike of religion, his 
table conversations and various things of that nature. Still, I'm firmly convinced that 
we'll stick to our agreement never to quarrel. Peter is peace-loving, tolerant and 
extremely easygoing. He lets me say a lot of things to him that he'd never accept 
from his mother. He's making a determined effort to remove the blots from his 
copybook and keep his affairs in order. Yet why does he hide his innermost self and 
never allow me access? Of course, he's much more closed than I am, but I know from 
experience (even though I'm constantly being accused of knowing all there is to know 
in theory, but not in practice) that in time, even the most uncommunicative types will 
long as much, or even more, for someone to confide in. 

Peter and I have both spent our contemplative years in the Annex. We often discuss 
the future, the past and the present, but as I've already told you, I miss the real 
thing, and yet I know it exists! 

Is it because I haven't been outdoors for so long that I've become so smitten with 
nature? I remember a time when a magnificent blue sky, chirping birds, moonlight and 
budding blossoms wouldn't have captivated me. Things have changed since I came 
here. One night during the Pentecost holiday, for instance, when it was so hot, I 
struggled to keep my eyes open until eleven-thirty so I could get a good look at the 

moon, all on my own for once. Alas, my sacrifice was in vain, since there was too 

much glare and I couldn't risk opening a window. An- other time, several months ago, 
I happened to be upstairs one night when the window was open. I didn't go back down 
until it had to be closed again. The dark, rainy evening, the wind, the racing clouds, 
had me spellbound; it was the first time in a year and a half that I'd seen the night 
face-to-face. After that evening my longing to see it again was even greater than my 
fear of burglars, a dark rat-infested house or robberies. I went downstairs all by 
myself and looked out the windows in the kitchen and private office. Many people 
think nature is beautiful, many people sleep from time to time under the starry sky, 
and many people in hospitals and prisons long for the day when they'll be free to 
enjoy what nature has to offer. But few are as isolated and cut off as we are from 
die joys of nature, which can be shared by rich and poor alike. 

It's not just my imagination — looking at die sky, die clouds, die moon and die stars 

really does make me feel calm and hopeful. It's much better medicine than valerian or 
bromide. Nature makes me feel humble and ready to face every blow with courage! 

As luck would have it, I'm only able — except for a few rare occasions-to view 
nature through dusty curtains tacked over dirt-caked windows! it takes die pleasure 
out of looking. Nature is die one thing for which dlere is no substitute! 

One of die many questions that have often bodlered me is why women have been, and 
still are, thought to be so inferior to men. It's easy to say it's unfair, but that's not 
enough for me! I'd really like to know the reason for this great injustice! 

Men presumably dominated women from the very beginning because of their greater 
physical strength; it's men who earn a living, beget children and do as they please. . . 
Until recently, women silently went along willi this, which was stupid, since the longer 
it's kept up, the more deeply entrenched it becomes. Fortunately, education, work and 
progress have opened women's eyes. In many countries they've been granted equal 
rights! many people, mainly women, but also men, now realize how wrong it was to 
tolerate this state of affairs for so long. Modern women want the right to be 
completely independent! 

But that's not all. Women should be respected as well! Generally speaking, men are 
held in great esteem in all parts ofthe world, so why shouldn't women have their 
share? Soldiers and war heroes are honored and commemorated, explorers are granted 
immortal fame, martyrs are revered, but how many people look upon women too as 

In the book Soldiers on the Home Front I was greatly struck by the fact that in 
childbirth alone, women commonly suffer more pain, illness and misery than any war 
hero ever does. And what's her reward for enduring all that pain? She gets pushed 
aside when she's disfigured by birth, her children soon leave, her beauty is gone. 
Women, who struggle and suffer pain to ensure the con- tinuation of the human race, 
make much tougher and more courageous soldiers than all those big-mouthed 
freedom- fighting heroes put together! 

I don't mean to imply that women should stop having children; on the contrary, nature 
intended them to, and that's the way it should be. What I condemn are our system of 
values and the men who don't acknowledge how great, difficult, but ultimately beautiful 
women's share in society is. 

I agree completely with Paul de Kruif, the author of this book, when he says that men 
must learn that birth is no longer thought of as inevitable and unavoidable in those 
parts of the world we consider civthzed. It's easy for men to talk — they don't and 
never will have to bear the woes that women do! 

I believe that in the course of the next century the notion that it's a woman's duty to 
have children will change and make way for the respect and admiration of all women, 
who bear their burdens without complaint or a lot of pompous words! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

FRIDAY, JUNE 16, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

New problems: Mrs. van D. is at her wit's end. She's talking about getting shot, being 

thrown in prison, being hanged and suicide. She's jealous that Peter confides in me and 

not in her, offended that Dussel doesn't re- spond sufficiently to her flirtations and 
afraid her husband's going to squander all the fur-coat money on to- bacco. She 
quarrels, curses, cries, feels sorry for herself, laughs and starts allover again. 

What on earth can you do with such a silly, sniveling specimen of humanity? Nobody 
takes her seriously, she has no strength of character, she complains to one and all, 
and you should see how she walks around: von hinten Lyzeum, yon vorne Museum.* 
[Acts like a schoolgirl, looks like a frump.] Even worse, Peter's becoming insolent, 
Mr. van Daan irritable and Mother cynical. Yes, everyone's in quite a state! There's 

only one rule you need to remember: laugh at everything and forget everybody else! It 

sounds egotistical, but it's actually the only cure for those suffering from self-pity. 

Mr. Kugler's supposed to spend four weeks in Alkmaar on a work detail. He's trying 
to get out of it with a doctor's certificate and a letter from Opekta. Mr. Kleiman's 
hoping his stomach will be operated on soon. Starting at eleven last night, all private 
phones were cut off. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

FRIDAY, JUNE 23, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Nothing special going on here. The British have begun their all-out attack on 
Cherbourg. According to Pirn and Mr. van Oaan, we're sure to be liberated before 
October 10. The Russians are taking part in the cam- paign; yesterday they started 
their offensive near Vitebsk, exactly three years to the day that the Germans invaded 

Bep's spirits have sunk lower than ever. We're nearly out of potatoes; from now on, 
we're going to count them out for each person, then everyone can do what they want 
with them. Starting Monday, Miep's taking a week of vacation. Mr. Kleiman's doctors 
haven't found anything on the X rays. He's torn between having an operation and 
letting matters take their course. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

TUESDAY, JUNE 27, 1944 

My dearest Kitty, 

The mood has changed, everything's going enormously well. Cherbourg, Vitebsk and 
Zhlobin fell today. They're sure to have captured lots of men and equipment. Five 
German generals were killed near Cherbourg and two taken captive. Now that they've 
got a harbor, the British can bring whatever they want on shore. The whole Cotentin 
Peninsula has been captured just three weeks after the invasion! What a feat! 

In the three weeks since D Day there hasn't been a day without rain and storms, 
neither here nor in France, but this bad luck hasn't kept the British and the Americans 
from displaying their might. And how! Of course, the Germans have launched their 
wonder weapon, but a little firecracker like that won't hardly make a dent, except 
maybe minor damage in England and screaming headlines in the Kraut newspapers. 
Anyway, when they realize in "Krautland" that the Bolsheviks really are getting closer, 
they'll be shaking in their boots. 

All German women who aren't working for the military are being evacuated, together 
with their children, from the coastal regions to the provinces of Groningen, Friesland 
and Gelderland. Mussert* [* The leader of the Dutch National Socialist (Nazi) Party] 
has announced that if the invasion reaches Holland, he'll enlist. Is that fat pig planning 
to fight? He could have done that in Russia long before now. Finland turned down a 
peace offer some time ago, and now the negotiations have been broken off again. 
Those numbskulls, they'll be sorry! 

How far do you think we'll be on July 27? 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

FRIDAY, JUNE 30, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

Bad weather from one at a stretch to the thirty June* [Anne's English.] Don't I say 
that well? Oh yes, I already know a little English; just to prove it I'm reading An 
Ideal Husband with the help of a dictionary! War's going wonderfully: Bobruysk, 
Mogilev and Orsha have fallen, lots of prisoners. 

Everything's all right here. Spirits are improving, our superoptimists are triumphant, 
the van Daans are doing disappearing acts with the sugar, Bep' s changed her hair, and 
Miep has a week off. That's the latest news! 

I've been having really ghastly root-canal work done on one of my front teeth. It's 
been terribly painful. It was so bad Dussel thought I was going to faint, and I nearly 
did. Mrs. van D. promptly got a toothache as well! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

P.S. We've heard from Basel that Bernd* [Cousin Bernhard (Buddy) Elias], played the 
part of the innkeeper in Minna von Barnhelm. He has "artistic leanings," says Mother. 


Dearest Kitty, 

My blood runs cold when Peter talks about becoming a criminal or a speculator; of 
course, he's joking, but I still have the feeling he's afraid of his own weakness. 

Margot and Peter are always saying to me, "If I had your spunk and your strength, if 
I had your drive and unflagging energy, could. . . 

Is it really such an admirable trait not to let myself be influenced by others? Am I 

right in following my own conscience? 

To be honest, I can't imagine how anyone could say "I'm weak" and then stay that 
way. If you know that about yourself, why not fight it, why not develop your 

character? Their answer has always been: "Because it's much easier not to!" This 

reply leaves me feeling rather discouraged. Easy? Does that mean a life of deceit and 
laziness is easy too? Oh no, that can't be true. It can't be true that people are so 
readily tempted by ease. . . and money. I've given a lot of thought to what my answer 
should be, to how I should get Peter to believe in himself and, most of all, to change 
himself for the better. I don't know whether I'm on the right track. 

I've often imagined how nice it would be if someone were to confide everything to 
me. But now that it's reached that point, I realize how difficult it is to put yourself in 
someope else's shoes and find the right answer. Especially since "easy" and "money" 
are new and com- pletely alien concepts to me. 

Peter's beginning to lean on me and I don't want that, not under any circumstances. 
It's hard enough standing on your own two feet, but when you also have to remain 
true to your character and soul, it's harder still. 

I've been drifting around at sea, have spent days searching for an effective antidote to 
that terrible word "easy." How can I make it clear to him that, while it may seem 
easy and wonderful, it will drag him down to the depths, to a place where he'll no 
longer find friends, support or beauty, so far down that he may never rise to the 
surface again? 

We're all alive, but we don't know why or what for; we're all searching for happiness; 
we're all leading lives that are different and yet the same. We three have been raised 
in good famthes, we have the opportunity to get an education and make something of 
ourselves. We have many reasons to hope for great happiness, but. . . we have to 
earn it. And that's something you can't achieve by taking the easy way out. Earning 
happiness means doing good and working, not speculating and being lazy. Laziness may 
look inviting, but only work gives you true satisfaction. 

I can't understand people who don't like to work, but that isn't Peter's problem either. 
He just doesn't have a goal, plus he thinks he's too stupid and inferior to ever achieve 
anything. Poor boy, he's never known how it feels to make someone else happy, and 
I'm afraid I can't teach him. He isn't religious, scoffs at Jesus Christ and takes the 
Lord's name in vain, and though I'm not Orthodox either, it hurts me every time to 
see him so lonely, so scornful, so wretched. 

People who are religious should be glad, since not everyone is blessed with the ability 
to believe in a higher order. You don't even have to live in fear of eternal punishment; 
the concepts of purgatory, heaven and hell are difficult for many people to accept, yet 
religion itself, any religion, keeps a person on the right path. Not the fear of God, but 
upholding your own sense of honor and obeying your own conscience. How noble and 
good everyone could be if, at the end of each day, they were to review their own 
behavior and weigh up the rights and wrongs. They would automatically try to do 
better at the start of each new day and, after a while, would certainly accomplish a 
great deal. Everyone is welcome to this prescription; it costs nothing and is definitely 
useful. Those who don't know will have to find out by experience that "a quiet 
conscience gives you strength!" 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

Dearest Kitty, 

Mr. Broks was in Beverwijk and managed to get hold of strawberries at the produce 
auction. They arrived here dusty and full of sand, but in large quantities. No less than 
twenty-four crates for the office and us. That very same evening we canned the first 
six jars and made eight jars of jam. The next morning Miep started making jam for 
the office. 

At twelve-thirty the outside door was locked, crates were lugged into the kitchen, 
with Peter, Father and Mr. van Daan stumbling up the stairs. Anne got hot water from 
the water heater, Margot"", went for a bucket, all hands on deck! With a funny feeling 
in my stomach, I entered the overcrowded office kitchen. Miep, Bep, Mr. Kleiman, Jan, 
Father, Peter: the Annex contingent and the Supply Corps all mixed up together, and 
that in the middle of the day! Curtains and windows open, loud voices, banging doors 
— I was trembling with excitement. I kept thinking, "Are we really in hiding?" This 
must be how it feels when you can finally go out into the world again. The pan was 
full, so I dashed upstairs, where the rest of the family was hulling strawberries around 
the kitchen table. At least that's what they were supposed to be doing, but more was 
going into their mouths than into the buckets. They were bound to need another 
bucket soon. Peter went back downstairs, but then the doorbell rang twice. Leaving the 
bucket where it was, Peter raced upstairs and shut the bookcase behind him. We sat 
kicking our heels impatiently; the strawberries were waiting to be rinsed, but we stuck 
to the house rule: "No running water when strangers are downstairs — they might 
hear the drains." 

Jan came up at one to tell us it had been the mail- man. Peter hurried downstairs 
again. Ding-dong. . . the doorbell, about-face. I listened to hear if anyone was 
coming, standing first at the bookcase, then at the top of the stairs. Finally Peter and 
I leaned over the banister, straining our ears like a couple of burglars to hear the 
sounds from downstairs. No unfamthar voices. Peter tip- toed halfway down the stairs 
and called out, "Bep!" 

Once more: "Bep!" His voice was drowned out by the racket in the kitchen. So he ran 
down to the kitchen while I nervously kept watch from above. "Go upstairs at once, 
Peter, the accountant's here, you've got to leave!" It was Mr. Kugler's voice. Sighing, 
Peter came upstairs and closed the bookcase. 

Mr. Kugler finally came up at one-thirty. "My gosh, the whole world's turned to 
strawberries. I had strawber- ries for breakfast, Jan's having diem for lunch, 
Kleiman's eating them as a snack, Miep's bothng them, Bep's hulling them, and I can 
smell them everywhere I go. I come upstairs to get away from all that red and what 
do I see? People washing strawberries!" 

The rest of the strawberries were canned. That evening: two jars came unsealed. 
Father quickly turned them into jam. The next morning: two more lids popped up: and 
that afternoon: four lids. Mr. van Daan hadn't gotten the jars hot enough when he was 
sterthzing them, so Father ended up making jam every evening. We ate hot cereal with 
strawberries, buttermilk with strawberries, bread with strawberries, strawberries for 
dessert, straw- berries with sugar, strawberries with sand. For two days there was 
nothing but strawberries, strawberries, strawberries, and then our supply was either 
exhausted or in jars, safely under lock and key. 

"Hey, Anne," Margot called out one day, "Mrs. van Hoeven has let us have some peas, 
twenty pounds!" 

"That's nice of her," I replied. And it certainly was, but it's so much work. . . ugh! 

"On Saturday, you've aJI got to shell peas," Mother announced at the table. 

And sure enough, this morning after breakfast our biggest enamel pan appeared on the 
table, filled to the brim with peas. If you think shelling peas is boring work, you ought 
to try removing the inner linings. I don't think many people realize that once you've 
pulled out the linings, the pods are soft, delicious and rich in vitamins. But an even 
greater advantage is that you get nearly three times as much as when you eat just the 

Stripping pods is a precise and meticulous job that might be suited to pedantic dentists 
or finicky spice experts, but it's a horror for an impatient teenager like me. We 
started work at nine-thirty: I sat down at ten-thirty, got Up again at eleven, sat 
down again at eleven-thirty. My ears were humming with the following refrain: snap 
the end, strip the pod, pull the string, pod in the pan, snap the end, strip the pod, pull 
the string, pod in the pan, etc., etc. My eyes were swimming: green, green, worm, 
string, rotten pod, green, green. To fight the boredom and have something to do, I 
chattered all morn- ing, saying whatever came into my head and making everyone 

laugh. The monotony was killing me. Every string I pulled made me more certain that 

I never, ever, want to be just a housewife! 

At twelve we finally ate breakfast, but from twelve-thirty to one-fifteen we had to 

strip pods again. When I stopped, I felt a bit seasick, and so did the others. I napped 

until four, still in a daze because of those wretched peas. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

We've received a book from the library with the challenging title What Do You Think 
of the Modern Young Girl? I'd like to discuss this subject today. 

The writer criticizes "today's youth" from head to toe, though without dismissing them 
all as "hopeless cases." On the contrary, she believes they have it within their power 

to build a bigger, better and more beautiful world, but that they occupy themselves 

with superficial things, without giving a thought to true beauty. In some passages I 
had the strong feeling that the writer was directing her disapproval at me, which is 
why I finally want to bare my soul to you and defend myself against this attack. 

I have one outstanding character trait that must be obvious to anyone who's known me 
for any length of time: I have a great deal of self-knowledge. In everything I do, I 
can watch myself as if I were a stranger. I can stand c across from the everyday 
Anne and, without being biased or making excuses, watch what she's doing, both the 
good and the bad. This self-awareness never leaves me, and every time I open my 
mouth, I think, "You should have said that differently" or "That's fine the way it is." I 
condemn myself in so many ways that I'm beginning to realize the truth of Father's 
adage: "Every child has to raise itself." Parents can only advise their children or point 
them in the right direction. Ultimately, people shape their own characters. In addition, 
I face life with an extraordinary amount of courage. I feel so strong and capable of 
bearing burdens, so young and free! When I first realized this, I was glad, because it 
means I can more easily withstand the blows life has in store. 

But I've talked about these things so often. Now I'd like to turn to the chapter "Father 
and Mother Don't Understand Me." My parents have always spoiled me rotten, treated 
me kindly, defended me against the van Daans and done all that parents can. And yet 
for the longest time I've felt extremely lonely, left out, neglected and misunderstood. 
Father did everything he could to curb my rebellious spirit, but it was no use. I've 
cured myself by holding my behavior up to the light and looking at what I was doing 


Why didn't Father support me in my struggle? Why did he fall short when he tried to 
offer me a helping hand? The answer is: he used the wrong methods. He always 
talked to me as if I were a child going through a difficult phase. It sounds crazy, 
since Father's the only one who's given me a sense of confidence and made me feel 
as if I'm a sensible person. But he overlooked one thing: he failed to see that this 
struggle to triumph over my difficulties was more important to me than anything else. 
I didn't want to hear about "typical adolescent problems," or "other girls," or "you'll 
grow out of it." I didn't want to be treated the same as all-the-other— girls, but as 
Anne— in — her— own— right, and rim didn't understand that. Besides, I can't confide in 
anyone unless they tell me a lot about themselves, and because I know very little 
about him, I can't get on a more intimate footing, rim always acts like the elderly 

father who once had the same fleeting im— pulses, but who can no longer relate to 

me as a friend, no matter how hard he tries. As a result, I've never shared my 
outlook on life or my long-pondered theories with anyone but my diary and, once in a 
while, Margot. I've hid any— thing having to do with me from Father, never shared my 
ideals with him, deliberately alienated myself from him. 

I couldn't have done it any other way. I've let myself be guided entirely by my 
feelings. It was egotistical, but I've done what was best for my own peace of mind. I 
would lose that, plus the self-confidence I've worked so hard to achieve, if I were to 
be subjected to criticism halfway through the job. It may sound hard-hearted, but I 
can't take criticism from rim either, because not only do I never share my innermost 
thoughts with him, but I've pushed him even further away by being irritable. 

This is a point I think about quite often: why is it that rim annoys me so much 

sometimes? I can hardly bear to have him tutor me, and his affection seems forced. I 

want to be left alone, and I'd rather he ignored me for a while until I'm more sure of 
myself when I'm talking to him! I'm still torn with guilt about the mean letter I wrote 
him when I was so upset. Oh, it's hard to be strong and brave in every way! 

Still, this hasn't been my greatest disappointment. No, I think about Peter much more 
than I do Father. I know very well that he was my conquest, and not the other way 
around. I created an image of him in my mind, pictured him as a quiet, sweet, 
sensitive boy badly in need of friendship and love! I needed to pour out my heart to a 
living person. I wanted a friend who would help me find my way again. I accomplished 
what I set out to do and drew him, slowly but surely, toward me. When I finally got 
him to be my friend, it automatically developed into an intimacy that, when I think 
about it now, seems outrageous. We talked about the most private things, but we 
haven't yet touched upon the things closest to my heart. I still can't make head or tail 

of Peter. Is he superficial, or is it shyness that holds him back, even with me? But 
putting all that aside, I made one mistake: I used intimacy to get closer to him, and in 
doing so, I ruled out other forms of friendship. He longs to be loved, and I can see 
he's beginning to like me more with each passing day. Our time together leaves him 
feeling satisfied, but just makes me want to start all over again. I never broach the 
subjects I long to bring out into the open. I forced Peter, more than he realizes, to 
get close to me, and now he's holding on for dear life. I honestly don't see any 
effective way of shaking him off and getting him back on his own two feet. I soon 
realized he could never be a kindred spirit, but still tried to help him break out of his 
narrow world and expand his youthful horizons. 

"Deep down, the young are lonelier than the old." I read this in a book somewhere and 
it's stuck in my mind. As far as I can tell, it's true. 

So if you're wondering whether it's harder for the adults here than for the children, 
the answer is no, it's certainly not. Older people have an opinion about everything and 
are sure of themselves and their actions. It's twice as hard for us young people to 
hold on to our opinions at a time when ideals are being shattered and destroyed, when 

the worst side of human nature predominates, when everyone has come to doubt truth, 

justice and God. 

Anyone who claims that the older folks have a more difficult time in the Annex 
doesn't realize that the problems have a far greater impact on us. We're much too 

young to deal with these problems, but they keep thrusting themselves on us until, 

finally, we're forced to think up a solution, though most of the time our solutions 
crumble when faced with the facts. It's difficult in times like these: ideals, dreams and 
cherished hopes rise within us, only to be crushed by grim reality. It's a wonder I 
haven't abandoned all my ideals, they seem so absurd and impractical. Yet I cling to 
them because I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart. 

It's utterly impossible for me to build my life on a foundation of chaos, suffering and 
death. I see the world being slowly transformed into a wilderness, I hear the 
approaching thunder that, one day, will destroy us too, I feel the suffering of millions. 
And yet, when I look up at the sky, I somehow feel that everything will change for 
the better, that this cruelty too shall end, that peace and tranquthty will return once 
more. In the meantime, I must hold on to my ideals. Perhaps the day will come when 
I'll be able to realize them! 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 

FRIDAY, JULY 21, 1944 

Dearest Kitty, 

I'm finally getting optimistic. Now, at last, things are going well! They really are! 
Great news! An assassination attempt has been made on Hitler's life, and for once not 
by Jewish Communists or English capitalists, but by a German general who's not only 
a count, but young as well. The Fuhrer owes his life to "Divine Providence": he 
escaped, unfortunately, with only a few minor burns and scratches. A number of the 
officers and generals who were nearby were killed or wounded. The head of the 
conspiracy has been shot. 

This is the best proof we've had so far that many officers and generals are fed up 
with the war and would like to see Hitler sink into a bottomless pit, so they can 
establish a mthtary dictatorship, make peace with the Allies, rearm themselves and, 
after a few decades, start a new war. Perhaps Providence is deliberately biding its 
time getting rid of Hider, since it's much easier, and cheaper, for the Allies to let the 
impeccable Germans kill each other off. It's less work for the Russians and the British, 
and it allows them to start rebuilding their own cities all that much sooner. But we 
haven't reached that point yet, and I'd hate to anticipate the glorious event. Still, 
you've probably noticed that I'm telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the 
truth. For once, I'm not rattling on about high ideals. 

Furthermore, Hitler has been so kind as to announce to his loyal, devoted people that 
as of today all mthtary personnel are under orders of the Gestapo, and that any 
soldier who knows that one of his superiors was involved in this cowardly attempt on 
the Fuhrer's life may shoot him on sight! 

A fine kettle of fish that will be. kittle Johnny's feet are sore after a long march and 
his commanding officer bawls him out. Johnny grabs his rifle, shouts, "You, you tried 
to kill the Fuhrer. Take that!" One shot, and the snooty officer who dared to 
reprimand him passes into eternal life (or is it eternal death?). Eventually, every time 
an officer sees a soldier or gives an order, he'll be practically wetting his pants, 
because the soldiers have more say-so than he does. 

Were you able to follow that, or have I been skipping from one subject to another 
again? I can't help it, the prospect of going back to school in October is making me 
too happy to be logical! Oh dear, didn't I just get through telling you I didn't want to 
anticipate events? Forgive me, Kitty, they don't call me a bundle of contradictions for 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 


Dearest Kitty, 

"A bundle of contradictions" was the end of my previous letter and is the beginning of 
this one. Can you please tell me exactly what "a bundle of contradictions" is? What 
does "contradiction" mean? Like so many words, it can be interpreted in two ways: a 
contradiction imposed from without and one imposed from within. The former means 
not accepting other people's opinions, always knowing best, having the last word; in 
short, all those unpleasant traits for which I'm known. The latter, for which I'm not 
known, is my own secret. 

As I've told you many times, I'm split in two. One side contains my exuberant 
cheerfulness, my flippancy, my joy in life and, above all, my abthty to appreciate the 
lighter side of things. By that I mean not finding anything wrong with flirtations, a 
kiss, an embrace, an off-color joke. This side of me is usually lying in wait to 
ambush the other one, which is much purer, deeper and finer. No one knows Anne's 
better side, and that's why most people can't stand me. Oh, I can be an amusing clown 
for an afternoon, but after that everyone's had enough of me to last a month. Actually, 
I'm what a romantic movie is to a profound thinker — a mere diversion, a comic 
interlude, something that is soon forgotten: not bad, but not particularly good either. I 
hate haVing to tell you this, but why shouldn't I admit it when I know it's true? My 
lighter, more superficial side will always steal a march on the deeper side and 
therefore always win. You can't imagine how often I've tried to pmsh away this Anne, 
which is only half of what is known as Anne -to beat her down, hide her. But it 
doesn't work, and I know why. 

I'm afraid that people who know me as I usually am will discover I have another side, 
a better and finer side. I'm afraid they'll mock me, think I'm ridiculous and sentimental 
and not take me seriously. I'm used to not being taken seriously, but only the 
"lighthearted" Anne is used to it and can put up with it: the "deeper" Anne is too 
weak. If I force the good Anne into the spotlight for even fifteen minutes, she shuts 
up like a clam the moment she's called upon to speak, and lets Anne number one do 
the talking. Before I realize it, she's disappeared. 

So the nice Anne is never seen in company. She's never made a single appearance, 
though she almost always takes the stage when I'm alone. I know exactly how I'd like 
to be, how I am ... on the inside. But unfortunately I'm only like that with myself. 
And perhaps that's why-no, I'm sure that's the reason why — I think of myself as 
happy on the inside and other people think I'm happy on the outside. I'm guided by 

the pure Anne within, but on the outside I'm nothing but a frolicsome little goat 
tugging at its tether. 

As I've told you, what I say is not what I feel, which is why I have a reputation for 
being boy-crazy as well as a flirt, a smart aleck and a reader of romances. The 
happy-go-lucky Anne laughs, gives a flippant reply, shrugs her shoulders and 
pretends she doesn't give a darn. The quiet Anne reacts in just the opposite way. If 
I'm being completely honest, I'll have to admit that it does matter to me, that I'm 
trying very hard to change myself, but that I I'm always up against a more powerful 

A voice within me is sobbing, "You see, that's what's become of you. You're 
surrounded by negative opinions, dismayed looks and mocking faces, people, who 
dislike you, and all because you don't listen to the advice of your own better half." 
Believe me, I'd like !' to listen, but it doesn't work, because if I'm quiet and serious, 
everyone thinks I'm putting on a new act and I have to save myself with a joke, and 
then I'm not even talking about my own family, who assume I must be sick, stuff me 
with aspirins and sedatives, feel my neck and forehead to see if I have a temperature, 
ask about my bowel movements and berate me for being in a bad mood, until I just 
can't keep it up anymore, because jj when everybody starts hovering over me, I get 
cross, then sad, and finally end up turning my heart inside g out, the bad part on the 
outside and the good part on the inside, and keep trying to find a way to become 
what I'd like to be and what I could be if ... if only there were no other people in 
the world. 

Yours, Anne M. Frank 



On the morning of August 4, 1944, sometime between ten and ten— thirty, a car pulled 
up at 263 Prinsengracht. Several figures emerged: an SS sergeant, Karl Josef 
Silberbauer, in full uniform, and at least three Dutch members of the Security Police, 
armed but in civilian clothes. Someone must have tipped them off. 

They arrested the eight people hiding in the Annex, as well as two of their helpers, 
Victor Kugler and Johannes Kleiman — though not Miep Gies and Elisabeth (Bep) 

Voskuijl-and took all the valuables and cash they could find in the Annex. 

After the arrest, Kugler and Kleiman were taken to a prison in Amsterdam. On 
September 11, 1944, they were transferred, without benefit of a trial, to a camp in 
Amersfoort (Holland). Kleiman, because of his poor health, was released on September 
18, 1944. He remained in Amsterdam until his death in 1959. 

Kugler managed to escape his imprisonment on March 28, 1945, when he and his 
fellow prisoners were being sent to Germany as forced laborers. He immigrated to 
Canada in 1955 and died in Toronto in 1989. 

Elisabeth (Bep) Voskuijl Wijk died in Amsterdam in 1983. 

Miep Santrouschitz Gies is still living in Amsterdam! her husband Jan died in 1993. 

Upon their arrest, the eight residents of the Annex were first brought to a prison in 
Amsterdam and then transferred to Westerbork, the transit camp for Jews in the north 
of Holland. They were deported on September 3, 1944, in the last transport to leave 
Westerbork, and arrived three days later in Auschwitz (Poland). 

Hermann van Pels (van Daan) was, according to the testimony of Otto Frank, gassed 
to death in Auschwitz in October or November 1944, shortly before the gas chambers 
were dismantled. 

Auguste van Pels (Petronella van Daan) was transported from Auschwitz to 
Bergen— Belsen, from there to Buchenwald, then to Theresienstadt on April 9, 1945, 
and apparently to another concentration camp after that. It is certain that she did not 
survive, though the date of her death is unknown. 

Peter van Pels (van Daan) was forced to take part in the January 16, 1945 "death 
march" from Auschwitz to Mauthausen (Austria), where he died on May 5, 1945, three 
days before the camp was liberated. 

Fritz Pfeffer (Albert Dussel) died on December 20, 1944, in the Neuengamme 
concentration camp, where he had been transferred from either Buchenwald or 

Edith Frank died in Auschwitz— Birkenau on January 6, 1945, from hunger and 

Margot and Anne Frank were transported from Auschwitz at the end of October and 

brought to Bergen Belsen, a concentration camp near Hannover (Germany). The typhus 
epidemic that broke out in the winter of 1944—1945, as a result of the horrendous 
hygenic conditions, killed thousands of prisoners, including Margot and, a few days 
later, Anne. She must have died in late February or early March. The bodies of both 
girls were probably dumped in Bergen-Belsen's mass graves. The camp was liberated 
by British troops on April 12, 1945. 

Otto Frank was the only one of the eight to survive the concentration camps. After 
Auschwitz was liberated by Russian troops, he was repatriated to Amsterdam by way 
of Odessa and Marseille. He arrived in Amsterdam on June 3, 1945, and stayed there 
until 1953, when he moved to Basel (Switzerland), where his sister and her family, 
and later his brother, lived. He married Elfriede Markovits Geiringer, originally from 
Vienna, who had survived Auschwitz and lost a husband and son in Mauthausen. Until 
his death on August 19, 1980, Otto Frank continued to live in Birsfelden, outside 
Basel, where he devoted himself to sharing the message of his daughter's diary with 
people all over the world. 

# # # 

Doubleday - New York, London, Toronto, Sydney, Auckland 

(c) 1991 by The Anne Frank— Fonds, Basel, Switzerland ( 

English translation (c) 1995 by Doubleday, a division of 
Bantam Doubleday Publishing Group, Inc. 

Printed in the LTnited States of America, March 1995 
ISBN 0-385-47378-8 
Scanned 09-2003, ver. 1.0 

This e-book is intended for nonprofit educational use only under "fair use" provisions 
of international copyright conventions and is not to be sold.